Where friends meet, fun happens and businesses prosper! We take pride in our local specialty shopping, casual to fine dining and an extraordinary variety of community events and entertainment.
Visalians Inc., or Downtown Visalians encompasses about 72 square blocks of downtown and was formed in 1963 by a group of merchants whose goal was to keep Downtown Visalia healthy and vibrant. 1963 was the beginning of the chain stores fleeing from city centers to mall locations in towns all over California. Visalia’s downtown lost J.C. Penny, J.J. Newberry, Sears, Montgomery Ward and Woolworth stores. The new Downtown Visalians threw themselves into promoting downtown and because of this early and steadfast commitment of these merchants, Visalia is one of the most successful downtowns of its size in California.
Downtown Visalians is funded by a surcharge on business licenses and fundraisers and is governed by a 15 member board of directors elected by the members and two appointed members. A member is deemed to be a business owner within the boundaries who can provide a current City of Visalia Business License or a business owner who contributes an appropriate Fair Share Membership fee.
Downtown Visalians employs a full time staff of four. Tony Greywolf, who is charged with keeping downtown clean and graffiti-free. He also works in cooperation with the city crews to maintain landscaping, planting and tree pruning. Lara Shewman is the Operations Director; Christi Metzner is Events & Membership Director and Elaine Martell is Executive Director.
Board Meetings are on the 4th Tuesday each month at 8 a.m. at 119 South Church Street
Board Of Directors
Anil Chagan, Comfort Suites
Mark Avedian, Avedian Properties
Terry Culotta, Valley Business Bank
Barbra Hood, Suncrest Bank
James Jessen, Tazzeria – PhD – Pizanos
David Miller, Pacific Employers
Nate Mustain, Brown’s Shoe Fit Co.
Michael Phelps, Michael’s Custom Jewelry
Nancy Phillips, Essentials Boutique
Janeen Robbins, Janeen’s Furniture Gallery
Duane Rodriguez, Downtown Rookies Sports Bar & Grill
Marlene Sciacca, Chelsea Street Boutique
Judy Silicato, Central Valley Community Bank
Craig VanHorn, A & W Restaurants
Michele Wiebe, Pacific Treasures & Gourmet
Gail Zurek, Visalia Chamber of Commerce