Author Archives: Jamie

What would bring you downtown more often? Join the conversation!





Community Conversation:

                 Help shape the future of downtown Martinsville, the heart of our community!

What would bring you downtown more often? Share your memories of fun times on the square and tell us your ideas for what would make our city center thrive once again.

Join us for a community conversation about the future of downtown Martinsville. On Tuesday, August 29th, from 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Craig & Mary Fenneman and Doug & Paul Molin, Artesian Group LLC, invite you to tell them what businesses you would like to see on the square, and beyond, in Martinsville. Come to the Main Connection at 460 S. Main St. (former school admin building) to meet the Fennemans and Molins, hear their story and to share your ideas for downtown. Be part of the vision for a better Martinsville!

Tuesday, August 29th

5:00 – 7:00 pm

The Main Connection

460 S. Main St.


Listen to Catherine McKowen, WCBK 102.3 FM, interview Doug Molin, Artesian Group:

Link Observatory Space Science Institute Donates Certified Eclipse Glasses to Local Schools

Morgan County, IN – With the Eclipse Across America taking place on Monday, August 21, the Link Observatory Space Science Institute has been busy ensuring the safety of the eyesight of Indiana’s youth. By supporting local school districts with free eclipse viewing glasses, the Institute is helping to spread the word on how to safely view this amazing astronomical event.

On August 21, the earth, sun, and moon will experience a solar eclipse that will last more than 90 minutes, coast to coast. The celestial bodies will line up to partially or completely block the sun from view, depending on the location in the U.S. It will be the most viewed astronomical event of the century.

“We want as many people as possible in Central Indiana to enjoy this event safely,” said Kurt Williams, the Institute’s Deputy Director. “Thanks to our partnership with NASA, we’ve been able to donate thousands of certified eclipse glasses to local school districts so they can protect their students’ eyesight.” The Institute’s donations included schools in the Indianapolis Public School District, Westfield Washington School District, Lawrence Township School District, Mooresville School District, Martinsville School District and many others.

While Central Indiana won’t experience a total solar eclipse, residents will see a partial eclipse where the sun will be about 91% covered.

“We’ll still have some darkness and have a great experience in Central Indiana,” said Williams. “By using either eclipse glasses or something called a pinhole projector, everyone can see the moon covering the sun. It is an amazing sight and one not to be missed.”

For information on how to create a pinhole projector, visit

The Link Observatory Space Science Institute works to benefit the community through efforts such as this because of generous support from local businesses and individuals. To learn more about the Institute and support its programs, please visit

Join the Martinsville Coder DoJo at the CEC; free coding club for ages 10+

389 E. Jackson St., Martinsville, IN  46151

Join our FREE CODING club and learn how to make websites, apps, & video games!

  • Every 1st Tuesday of the month from 6-8 p.m. (except for August 2017, when we will meet on the 2nd Tuesday of the month)
  • Ages 10+
  • Spots are limited.  So, register ASAP!
  • If you have any questions, please email

Want to join? Sign up today at

CoderDojo is an international coding community with sites in many countries around the world. Community professionals will come in to teach students the hands-on skills required to complete various coding projects. For more information about CoderDojo, please visit  

More than 20 buildings to be purchased, rehabbed to revitalize downtown Martinsville

What wonderful news for our community! Thank you to Doug & Paula Molin and Craig & Mary Fenneman, Artesian Group LLC, for caring so deeply about Martinsville and our downtown. Stay tuned for updates as the heart of our city is transformed.

Martinsville, Ind. – July 21, 2017 – With an anticipated investment of more than $4 million in the purchase of two downtown buildings and an additional 18-plus to be purchased in the next few weeks, Artesian Group LLC led by Craig Fenneman and Doug Molin is leading the charge in Martinsville’s downtown revitalization.

According to Fenneman, the purchase and rehabilitation of the structures in Martinsville’s downtown square were propelled by the shared vision between his team and Mayor Shannon Kohl’s administration.

“We have been working together with Mayor Kohl and other members of her administration for several months on plans to take on the necessary revitalization of several downtown buildings – many of them historical structures – to help attract new businesses to our community. Her vision is key to our investment.

“The Mayor’s ideas and goals for a revitalized downtown as outlined in her administration’s 100-Day and now 200-Day plans were right in line with our long-term goals for Martinsville,” Fenneman said. “We would not be doing these rehabilitation projects if it were not for Mayor Kohl’s and the City Council’s vision of an improved downtown and their support of and assistance for our efforts.”

Fenneman, his wife Mary and Molin and his wife Paula are overseeing work that started on buildings purchased at 10 East Morgan Street and 18 East Morgan Street.

“Currently, we are cleaning out the structures with plans to connect the buildings. We have a tenant in the works for the space. Many of the buildings we purchase will be multi-phased because they will need to be cleaned out before rehabilitation work can proceed.

“Our plans call for retailers to be housed on the first floor of two-story structures with the upstairs rehabbed into quality apartments, with ultimately 25-30 downtown apartments available for rent.

“One of our primary goals is to help create a critical mass of three to four new restaurants to complement the great variety of existing eateries already downtown. We are thinking of some combination of an Italian restaurant, a brew pub and perhaps something like a BBQ location, but we’ll have to see how that all plays out.

“As the Kohl administration is working hard to do, our ultimate goal is to make Martinsville a destination for folks to visit, spend money and realize this community is a great place to live and work. The purchase and rehabilitation of buildings downtown is how we can contribute to that success,” Fenneman said. “We started our concept as a private-public partnership. It’s been inspiring to us to see so many people excited about our plans and progress.”

Fenneman credits the Martinsville Chamber of Commerce and the Morgan County Economic Development Corporation for their support along with many downtown businesses who have been helpful and welcoming in the revitalization efforts.

What do you want Martinsville to be in 5 years? 10 years? 20 years? Tell us…

Last week, Launch Martinsville hosted a public meeting for folks to share their thoughts about what they want Martinsville to look like in the future.  HWC Engineering presented a brief overview of the comprehensive plan process and then guided us through the stations where we gave feedback on what we are proud of Martinsville for, what opportunities we see for the future and what changes we would like to see. Martinsville, we are at a crucial tipping point right now, and Mayor Shannon E. Kohl and the city administration are asking YOU what you want our future to look like. Please take advantage of this oppportunity to help shape our future! Take a few minutes to take this brief survey: