Downtown Bellefonte, Inc. (DBI) is dedicated to helping business arrive and thrive in 21st Century Bellefonte while preserving, protecting, and utilizing Bellefonte’s historic architecture and heritage, and organizing town-wide initiatives that invite residents and visitors alike to discover all that Bellefonte has to offer.
Downtown Bellefonte’s primary role is to champion downtown Bellefonte’s economic vitality. It is Downtown Bellefonte‘s responsibility to identify market trends and create opportunities to foster a positive economic environment by capitalizing on its proximity to higher education epicenters and easily accessible thoroughfares. The organization leads recruitment initiatives to bring new businesses to downtown while working with current businesses through retention, sustainment, and expansion efforts. SpringBoard, Downtown Bellefonte’s business incubator and co-working space, offers guidance and resources to entrepreneurs and professionals.
A living, breathing downtown is one that embraces community assets and represents good economic health and a high quality of life. This is strengthened by the coordinated efforts of business and community organizations, established business owners, volunteers, progressive political leadership, local government and responsible property owners. By working together, Downtown Bellefonte recognizes that community affiliations and partnerships are always vital to future progress.
Very few populated downtowns in America are as well preserved and charming as Bellefonte; our architecture is widely recognized as a valuable asset that needs to be maintained with care and passion. Downtown Bellefonte works closely with preservation groups, the Bellefonte Borough government and code officials to help encourage and maintain the town’s infrastructure by offering real support in maintaining a historically preserved community while promoting its adaptive reuse potential.
Downtown Bellefonte believes strongly that history and art are inseparable from a living, breathing downtown. Historical significance — such as the Victorian architecture and the legacy of the town’s seven U.S. governors, and the Underground Railroad — on both the state and national level give the town an air of American relevance. By that same token, the town’s reputation as a gathering place for artists and artisans is a vital part of the Bellefonte aura. This combination serves as a major draw to locals and visitors as well as helping to attract new businesses. DBI works closely with local art and historic organizations, museums, galleries, and community organizers in a concentrated year-round effort to promote Bellefonte’s heritage, cultural and creative strengths.
Part of the Pennsylvania Wilds, there is a natural Appalachian wonderland surrounding Bellefonte that makes it unique. Talleyrand Park is one of the most beautiful public parks in the entire state. Flowing through the park and much of Bellefonte, Spring Creek is recognized as one of the best trout streams in the world. Central Pennsylvania is home to millions of acres of publicly accessible state parks, forests, and game lands, and much of that land is within a quick drive from downtown. DBI works with a variety of local and state organizations and groups to highlight the infinite natural blessings that are in and around Bellefonte. As Central Pennsylvania continues to grow as a popular destination for fly fishing, hunting, kayaking, hiking, and biking, DBI works to advance and promote our many outdoor attractions.
Powered by Downtown Bellefonte Inc., Bellefonte SpringBoard is a small business and innovation center that provides coworking, business resources, programming, and more. Since first opening its doors in 2017, SpringBoard has served as a catalyst for entrepreneurial ideas and played a role in the revitalization of the entire downtown.
Visit the SpringBoard website here.
Annually, Downtown Bellefonte Inc. holds events that have been transformational for the community, including Bellefonte Under the Lights, the Winter Market, Fridays in the 'Fonte, and the Outdoor Adventure Expo.
As part of its revitalization efforts, Downtown Bellefonte Inc. is in the early stages of commissioning a mural in the downtown area. In addition to our historic buildings, well-tended gardens, and clean sidewalks, public art can benefit our community. Public art enriches our communities, draws in tourists, encourages economic growth, and beautifies our town. Our hope is that by increasing the amount of public art in Bellefonte, we will continue to build on the quality of place efforts accelerated by Downtown Bellefonte Inc.
We would like to bring more public art to Downtown Bellefonte, and we are asking for your feedback. Please let us know your thoughts on public art on this survey - https://form.jotform.com/230365120907146
Downtown Bellefonte Inc. supports all legal businesses that operate in the Borough of Bellefonte and surrounding areas, including but not limited to brick-and-mortar, service, intellectual property, pop-up, and mobile. While DBI cannot organize activities for every business, it will create opportunities for each entity to thrive and contribute to the economic vitality of the Bellefonte community. DBI is committed to positively impacting the lives and livelihoods of its neighbors.
Downtown Bellefonte Inc. is welcoming all people regardless of gender, skin color, ethnicity, religious belief, age, disability or sexual orientation. We believe that diversity and inclusion are key components in building a robust and compassionate community. While we may have unique perspectives or backgrounds, we are united in the commonalities we have through our love of Bellefonte.