As a native Abileneian, I have fond memories of Downtown Abilene. Today I am creating new memories such as taking my grandkids to the Paramount Theatre or racing pinewood cars at a Cub Scout meeting at the 201 Event Center.
Just a few years ago, I was driving down North 2nd near Mesquite when I noticed a “For Sale” sign taped to the side of an old building. On a whim, I stopped in and was given a tour. It was love at first sight! I could see the life and promise within the brick walls and old wooden floors and high ceilings. I purchased the building without knowing what I would do with it. Fast forward to April of 2018, we opened our doors as an event center, but it is so much more. This old building comes to life with each dance, wedding, and craft fair.
We knew we couldn’t stop there. We have purchased buildings on Pine Street and Cedar Street. Our goals are simple: Create spaces where life happens. A new downtown hotel doesn’t mean that we’ll stop working. To the contrary, it gives us a means to show off our downtown to outsiders. We want to create experiences for our Abileneian natives and their guests, ones that will make you want to come back again and again. Our plans our big, and audacious, and even downright crazy, but we believe that the people of Abilene deserve to be able to enjoy their downtown.
There are glimmers of this happening right now. Take a stroll through Downtown. Take time to see the beautiful murals, the new businesses popping up, and the investments being made. Sometimes, if you stand quietly, you can hear the heartbeat of Abilene as our Downtown comes back to life. This is where our passion and drive to continue comes from.
-Charlie Wolfe, 201 Mesquite, Wolfe Development Inc.