Business View Magazine | December 2018

352 353 where you have a lot of homes that are within walk- ing distance to the beach; many of those are rentals and become tourist homes during the summer.On the town side of the canal,we have our historic downtown,which is where our central business district is. So,we have a lot of people who come to Lewes for different reasons - sometimes it’s for the shopping or the fabulous restaurants; some people come for the beach; others come for the heritage tourism and the historic preservation side of things.” “Things are much quieter in the winter,”Town- shend adds.“It used to be Memorial Day to Labor Day and then it got real quiet. But we’re finding that the shoulder seasons are expanding.You tend to see a lot of people coming into town through Christmas. The fall is a great time for cycling and walking and you end up having a lot of 5Ks and those types of things.With a very vibrant, central business district, as you come up to Christmas season, you get a lot of people coming to shop, because it’s such a beautiful place with great shops and places to eat. So that keeps people coming, and the Lewes Chamber of Commerce is an active partner with the city in keep- ing the town bustling throughout the year.” Lewes is also an “amazingly engaged community,” adds Mayor,Ted Becker.“People who have been here care deeply about the community, and people who have come here,whether it was to retire or relocate, have really bought into the community with their time and talent. So, consequently,we are able to offer a quality of life that the city budget could not possibly accomplish.We would not be the town we LEWES, DELAWARE are without our volunteers. “We have over 200 volunteers,many who do not even live in the city, but in the surrounding areas, who maintain the public gardens.And, as a result, they have entered,with the city’s endorsement, into the America in Bloom contest for the past several years, and won every category.This year, they opted to enter the Communities in Bloom contest,which is the international contest, and just recently, they won that award,which is quite a tribute to them.We’re also able to support things like a history book festi- val,which is the only one in the country.We have a classical music concert series that is in its 20th year. Within the last three years,we built a new library that doubled the square footage of our previous library–from 14,000 to 28,000 square feet. So,we have this amazingly engaged community that really makes it what it is.” Preserving the integrity of Lewes’ historic district, as well as the area’s natural amenities, are import- ant items on the city’s agenda.“Lewes is a very envi- ronmentally-minded community,” says Townshend. “We have an active mitigation planning team and through that group,we work on strategies to keep us resilient, given that we are located in an area with storms and sea level rise,which can definitely have an effect on us.And we’ve got a beautiful salt marsh along the north end of town,which is import- ant to the Atlantic Flyway,where the migratory birds move between north and south with the seasons.” “There is a lot of development pressure in and around the city and we’re surrounded by unin- corporated area in the county that is very rapidly suburbanizing,” she continues.“So, in 2016, City PHOTO BY BROOK HEDGE PHOTO BY MICHAEL TOWNSHEND