The goal of the Ste. Genevieve Downtown Renewal Project’s (SGDRP) newest campaign, “This Place Matters,” is to raise awareness of historic properties within the community that are in need of new ownership, rehabilitation or donations.

During their first “go” at the initiative last week, attendees certainly sparked the awareness.

“What are you doing?” asked a curious boy who resides in a home neighboring the historic house located at 152 N. Second St.

“Raising awareness,” said a member of the SGDRP cheerfully.

The boy hung around until photos were completed, and the SGDRP members dispersed to their next stop — as neighbors who were sneaking a peak at the gathering from their windows and doors went back to their prior engagements.

The SGDRP visited five properties — the Jean Baptiste Birke House, 151 Ziegler St.; the Old School House, 145 Washington St.; the Antoine Oneille House, 150 S. Main St.; the Moses Austin Annex, 68 S. Gabouri St.; and 152 N. Second St.

“This place does matter,” said Petree Powell, community development administrator, at the first stop.

At each location, the SGDRP posed in front of each house while holding signs that showcase the “This Place Matters” logo, which looks similar to that of the Google Maps bubble.

“This Place Matters” is a national campaign that was started in 2008 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.


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