East Side Enterprise Center now open for business


The East Side Enterprise Center (ESEC) has held two major events to introduce itself to the world: the October 30 New Moon community celebration and the official November 18 Grand Opening for all ESEC partners.

Each event showcased a separate aspect of ESEC. The New Moon festival proved it’s a family-friendly gathering place for the whole community, with a petting zoo, live music, Day of the Dead activities, Big Free Library and, of course, food. ESEC is already hosting a wide variety of organizational meetings and will soon also be available for private events.

The Grand Opening highlighted the rainbow alliance for small business that ESEC has created and is continuing to nurture. Event chair Mario Hernández, Vice-President of the Latino Economic Development Center, stressed a common theme: the new level of energy and vitality on the East Side, and a confidence that by working together and supporting each other, the neighborhood’s disparate cultural and ethnic communities will be much stronger and successful. Sia Lo, administrator of Dellwood Gardens assisted living center and leader in the Hmong community, echoed that sentiment, comparing the revitalization of the East Side to the community determination that created the Grand Avenue business area.

The brainchild of Hernández and Dayton’s Bluff Community Council Executive Director Deanna Abbott-Foster, ESEC now has 12 organizational partners that will bring their services to the East Side. And in a move akin to moving from Baltic Avenue to Park Place, it’s also the sparkling new home of the Dayton’s Bluff Community Council.

The Grand Opening also served as the venue to announce the formation of the newly-formed East Side Alive, an unprecedented collaborative of funders and city and nonprofit agencies. The group’s first project has been to submit an application for Promise Zone designation, President Obama’s plan to create economic opportunity in high-poverty communities. Whether or not the designation is achieved, East Side Alive has determined that it will continue to support and promote the upward trajectory of the new East Side.

More information about all these initiatives and individual partners can be found at daytonsbluff.org.