Written by Kristen Schmutz
Belden Communications News
At a regular meeting of the Cocoa City Council held on Tuesday, July 27, the council announced that Historic Cocoa Village Main Street was the recipient of an Honor Award presented by Florida Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee.
According to a release, the Honor Award was presented at a dinner, held for the occasion at the 36th Florida Main Street “Preservation on Main Street” Conference, held in New Port Richey, on July 23. The Honor Award recognized the Historic Cocoa Village Online Marketplace as an outstanding economic vitality program or project.
In early April 2020, Cocoa Village had to curtail activities due to Covid-19. In aiding impacted merchants, the City of Cocoa closed parking spaces at main points in the Village, assisting with curbside pickup of goods.
Recognizing the need for merchants to supply online ordering and ease curbside pickup, Carolyn Sheriff, Historic Cocoa Village Main Street’s (HCVMS) website manager, constructed an online marketplace accessible through the website home page. Further, a tutorial was created, teaching merchants how to take full advantage of the new platform, allowing each merchant to add products to the site, and exposing merchants to a broader audience.
If a merchant has an existing online presence, customers were channeled directly to that merchant’s online store.
Though difficult to measure the success of the project, one participating merchant confessed that despite Covid-19, he had a record June last year. The Marketplace is still active today, featuring access to over sixty Cocoa Village merchants.
Throughout each year, Historic Cocoa Village Main Street organizes several mission-supportive events, including four Art & Craft Fairs, quarterly Sip & Strolls, Central Florida Car Shows, Chili Cook-Off, Just A Touch of Cocoa, the Brewer’s Bash, and the new, month-long Hot Cocoa Holidays celebration in December.