Community leaders from across Iowa who are looking for ideas on how to give their downtowns a boost are in Mason City today. A conference opened this morning at Music Man Square. This is the 16th annual Iowa downtown conference, this year called the Iowa Downtown Summit. The summit will discuss how the role of art, culture, and entertainment can be used as a downtown economic development strategy. Thom Guzman, manager of the Iowa Department of Economic Development’s Downtown resource center, says the summit will have a Music Man flavor, given the location as the conference will highlight several attractions in Mason City. The mayor and other leaders from Providence, Rhode Island, will open the conference today with a talk about the importance of arts and culture in a community. The conference runs until Wednesday at noon.
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