Downtown Edmonds Merchants Association celebrates individuals behind the storefronts

    Pat McKee, shown here at his store, welcomes "any downtown business person" to attend the Downtown Edmonds Merchants Association meetings on the first Friday of each month.

    Tomorrow at 8:30 a.m., a hearty band of downtown Edmonds merchants will gather  — as they do on the first Friday of every month — in the basement of the Savvy Traveler to sing good-morning songs and enjoy gifts of flowers and boxes of chocolates.

    Celebrating the merchants — “the individuals who are the faces of the stores and of downtown Edmonds” — is one of three goals that Pat McKee, the current president of the Downtown Edmonds Merchants Association (DEMA) — has for his organization, which was created by the Edmonds Chamber of Commerce specifically to promote businesses in the downtown area.

    McKee, a retired Nordstrom employee who began his second career seven years ago when he opened Nama’s Candy Store, is passionate about his role as an advocate for downtown businesses. In addition to celebrating the merchants, he works to ensure that DEMA members are connected to events put on by the Chamber, the City of Edmonds, service groups and other organizations. In addition, McKee oversees DEMA-sponsored events — such as the recent fashion show — which raise money to support advertising campaigns aimed at bringing customers to the downtown area.

    McKee said that the majority of downtown Edmonds businesses belong to DEMA, but he encourages “any businessperson in downtown Edmonds who has a store or an office or an interest” in the organization to attend a monthly meeting. There are no dues and Chamber membership isn’t required, but you do have to be a downtown merchant to cast a vote, he noted.

    DEMA is also actively involved in promoting the development of a Business Improvement District, which under state law can be formed if a majority of businesses agree to assess themselves to pay for marketing, beautification and related improvements. 

    “We’re very excited about it because we want to promote the town,” McKee said.

    The area of the proposed district (see map) is centered around the fountain at 5th and Main Streets and with boundaries on the north by Bell Street, on the east by Durbin Street, on the south by Homeland Drive and on the west by Sunset Avenue and Railroad Avenue.

    More information on the proposed Edmonds Business Improvement District, which if formed would be administered by the City of Edmonds, can be found here.





    9 Replies to “Downtown Edmonds Merchants Association celebrates individuals behind the storefronts”

    1. Sunset Avenue and Railroad Avenue run parallel to each other, and Railroad Street is incorrect. To be a street in Edmonds, you have to run east-west like 196th Street SW does.


    2. Railroad Street runs through the parking lot East of the railroad tracks and South of Main Street. It runs parallel to Railroad Avenue. Check it out on Google Maps. Who knew?


    3. This information was taken directly from the BID website. Apologies for not doublechecking the street names. They’ve been fixed.


    4. Teresa: The article was correct as originally written. See my comment above. I also confirmed that Railroad Street is on the official City of Edmonds zoning map. But all your correction does is add the railroad tracks to the BID so I think it is equally correct and less confusing since probably very few people know where Railroad Street is located.

      From the Office of the Acting Chief of Useless Trivia


    5. I actually thought the article was about Dema not streets on a map If that is all you got out of the article shame. I have been a member of Dema for many years and they have always promoted the city of Edmonds and all of the leaders should be congratulated for the the many hours devoted to helping promote the econimic viability of downtown. So to Pat and all those before him Thanks for volenteering to do a thankless job


    6. I would like to appoligize to all the merchants who over the years have volunteered for committes or donated money or services or ideas to make DEMA successful for not including them in comment # 7


    7. Due to the resolution capabilities of my computer monitor combined with the poor quality of the graphic, I looked at the map and could not make out the words Railroad Street, and posted a correction to be reviewed by the moderator of the website.

      This was meant in no way to undermine the efforrts of the DEMA or BID, Don. I was trying to contribute to factual correctness and I did not. I apologize.


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