Rhonda and Casey Farrell of Granby received a 2012 Governor's Award for Downtown Excellence this fall for the rebuilding of their Gambles store.
For the history associated with the lot, which sat empty eight years after the destruction of the building in the 2004 Marvin Heemeyer bulldozer attack, the new building was commemorated during the Governor's Award Ceremony in Golden in September, when the Farrells received the "Colorful Colorado" award.
"Each year the Colorful Colorado award is given to an exciting, inspiring, creative, fun or effective project that the judges want to recognize outside their original nomination category," said said Katherine Correll, executive director of Downtown Colorado, Inc.
Laurie Findley of Granby's Main Street organization submitted Gambles for the award. She originally sought the category of "best new construction or infill development" for the Governor's Award for Downtown Excellence, she said. In the end, judges selected Gambles for the unique category that is not always given out each year.
"It was neat to be recognized by the group," said Casey Farrell, who attended the ceremony with wife Rhonda.
Since returning to Main Street in a smaller 4,500 square-foot building compared to the one it replaced, the Farrells' business has "finally been going up," he said. He attributes business picking up to a combination of being back on Main Street and "being more visible," and an uptick in the economy.
Six months ago he added Serta beds to his inventory to diversify the established appliance business.
Downtown Colorado, Inc., is a nonprofit membership organization committed to building better communities through educational and technical assistance. Since 2003, the Governor's Award has recognized outstanding projects and people that reflect an attitude of perseverance and dedication to community revitalization in Colorado.
Other winners throughout Colorado were selected for best adaptive reuse and rehabilitation, best downtown management program, best façade program, best promotional event, best public space project, creative community, and downtowner of the year.
"DCI and our selection committee were thrilled by the innovative projects submitted for the 2012 Governor's Awards for Downtown Excellence," said Correll. "This year's nominations highlighted the importance of bringing partners and resources together to support downtown initiatives. With more nominations than recent years, each category was highly competitive and a lot of difficult choices had to be made."
The Farrells received a certificate signed by Governor John Hickenlooper, as well as representatives from the Department of Local Affairs and Downtown Colorado Inc.