Panelists were Suzanne Modrak, Beaver County Community Development; Jack Manning, Town Center Associates; Whitney Brady, Ambridge borough manager, Steve Roberts, Howard Hanna real estate agent and owner of Good Intent Trading Co., Lorianne Burgess, vice president of Ambridge Area Chamber of Commerce and owner of Stangl's Bakery.
Modrak, downtown and economic development coordinator, spoke about available grants and other assistance available through the county to anyone with a business or hoping to improve a business. Modrak said she thought the seminar offered "a wonderful opportunity" for all.
"I would like to thank you (Felicia) and Larissa for what I believe was a very engaging panel discussion," Modrak said.
Manning, municipal program director at Town Center Associates, said big box stores destroyed retail mom and pop shops, but are now facing a struggle with internet shopping. He believes millennials, who have a sense of community and social responsibility, will help change the face of future business in the long-term.
"Ambridge has so much going for it, in terms of its location and proximity to Pittsburgh, along this corridor, Old Economy Village, you have got a lot of things going that would want to make people invest in a business in downtown Ambridge."
Manning, also of the Beaver County Chamber of Commerce, said he was excited to see people come out, adding that he's always pleased when there is an interest in developing traditional downtown business districts.
Roberts, real estate agent and local business owner, said he thought it was encouraging to see so many people excited about Ambridge and to bring panelists from various backgrounds together.
Those who couldn't attend in person were able to watch live online.
Cortney Pazzanita, who attended the event, said she came hoping to ask questions and gain valuable information for her father, who owns the Tic Tock Cafe, a longtime business on 11th Street in Ambridge. She was pleased and inspired by the event.
"I think that was awesome of (Ambridge Connection) to get everyone together, to make it easier for enthusiastic business owners -- and to revive this town," Pazzanita said. "There's no reason why it couldn't happen."
"I enjoyed each and every one of the presenters," Aleshia Williams said. "They all seemed to have a genuine interest in promoting Ambridge and bought some doable information to the table. I was impressed with the professionalism of the event and hope you'll have another one down the road."
Felicia Mycyk, co-founder of Ambridge Connection, said, "It was great to see so many with the passion to start up their own businesses and to consider this area. Our goal is to connect everyone and if we can influence one business then who knows who else may be motivated to come this way."
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