We’ve lived in Cottage Grove a long time, and we love this town. We’ve made lifelong friends, we’ve shared ups and downs, and we’ve been enriched and inspired by our community in so many ways.
It’s our turn to give back. And we see opportunities everywhere we look—opportunities to help our town take its place as one of Oregon’s sweet spots, a go-to destination for visitors, and a vibrant, economically sustainable home for residents.
We have all the ingredients: the historic downtown, the stunning natural surroundings, the warm, capable people. What we need are more higher paying jobs to help make our town more resilient and sustainable. We need jobs that can help families afford the increasing cost of living in the Willamette Valley. Jobs that provide opportunities for our young adults to stay here, so we can keep generations of families together. And jobs that will attract new talent and new families who will bring their energy and enthusiasm.
We’ve given this a lot of thought and have brought together our decades of experience in business, entrepreneurship, strategic marketing, and development. And we have a plan—well, several plans. They’re all about catalyzing a Cottage Grove Renaissance, starting with the downtown. We already have some great businesses in our core downtown area. We are honored to partner with them because none of us can do it alone.
To start, here’s what we’re visualizing. We hope you’ll be part of it.
Real Estate Development & Brokerage
We all know that a vibrant downtown is key to a healthy community. The downtown is where people gather, share ideas, have fun, work, and just hang out. We need more opportunities for businesses to operate on Main Street and close by.
With this in mind, one of our main focuses is real estate development. Our first project was to purchase and renovate the historic Bank Building, originally built in 1904. Over the decades, it had become the “biggest, ugliest building” in the downtown, a huge eyesore, and a blight in the neighborhood. Its renovation was an enormous effort, but it now houses two dozen commercial tenants and six residential apartments upstairs which are fully occupied.
A future project, which we call the Filmer Building, will be developed on the empty lot across from the Bank Building. Catherine Filmer was a beloved art teacher at Cottage Grove High School who was killed in the 1989 blaze that burned down the buildings on the site. Plans are underway for a beautiful, historically aligned development. Stay tuned.
Supporting these efforts are in-house residential and commercial real estate brokers, experts in local properties, and part of Windermere Real Estate.
Tourism, Entertainment, Hospitality, & Retail
Every community needs opportunities to have fun. Plus, “fun” opportunities also bring visitors and jobs to our community.
In Summer 2021, we founded and unveiled a teaser roll-out of the FUN! Company brand, selling ice cream and bottled water at community events, including Concerts at the Park and Bohemia Mining Days.
For 2022, we plan to introduce multiple, professionally designed and executed tours of the Cottage Grove area. We also plan to create and market a range of travel souvenirs and Cottage Grove-branded clothing products (e.g., shirts, hats, etc.). Additionally, we’re planning for bike and scooter rentals.
In 2023, we hope to expand into foodservice, events management, and more entertainment and hospitality products.
If you’re planning a building project, our management consulting expertise can help you shepherd it through all the hurdles, from acquisition, to planning, to implementation. One of our current local projects is managing the transformation of a 50,000 square-foot historic local school property, the old Harrison Elementary School.
Another one of our projects is on the Oregon Coast in Dunes City, where we’ve been successful in reviving a 40-acre development stalled for 10 years. Today, this new 24-lot subdivision on Little Woahink Lake is nearly complete and will soon have 1-acre lots for sale.
Blackstone has decades of experience providing management and marketing consulting services to a range of companies, from multi-billion-dollar corporations to small startups. We work with companies to increase their sales and gain a competitive advantage.
For the last six years, we’ve been on retainer with the Oregon Nanoscience and Microtechnologies Institute (ONAMI), a nonprofit funded by the State of Oregon. We research, evaluate, advise, and help guide the commercial development of science-based discoveries, inventions, and startups from Oregon State University, Oregon Health and Sciences University, Portland State University, and the University of Oregon.