With a new name and fresh vision, the Downtown Business Alliance is ready to make some major moves in the coming months to bring as much vitality to downtown New Iberia as possible.
Formerly called the Downtown Business Association, the organization was originally created to organize New Iberia’s annual Christmas parade on Main Street.
However, Jane Braud, president of the organization, said the group of business owners are now trying to expand to not only provide a parade, but other events throughout the year that will benefit downtown economically and culturally.
Braud said that with the name change also came a designation as a non-profit organization, and a website is in the works to highlight the organization and its members and volunteers.
“We decided to take it in a different direction,” Braud said. “We have a non-profit status and we meet once a month where we plan for the whole year.”
The DBA is currently busy organizing its annual festival, and has added Christmas lights and other decorations to Main Street that surpass the lights usually placed downtown every year. A wreath hanging on the gazebo in Bouligny Plaza has recently been placed, as have additional Christmas lights on local businesses.
Braud said the motivation for the new work came from the recognition of the beauty of downtown New Iberia during the release of the recent Lifetime movie that was filmed over the summer in New Iberia, “Christmas in Louisiana.”
“People are energized,” Braud said. “It just sort of shows how beautiful it is when the community comes together.”
The DBA is expected to put on events for other holidays in the coming year, and has monthly meetings to organize and plan about the organization’s projects for the whole year.