Friendly ambassadors will share parking secrets, dining picks with downtown visitors this summer | SteamboatToday.com

Friendly ambassadors will share parking secrets, dining picks with downtown visitors this summer

Main Street seeks ambassadors to assist Steamboat visitors

Shoppers stroll through downtown Steamboat Springs on a summer afternoon.

— Friendly demeanor mandatory.

Cowboy hat optional.

Main Street Steamboat Springs is seeking volunteers for a new downtown ambassador program that will place walking, talking information booths in the city's commercial center.

Where should I have lunch?

I found this wallet. Where do I take it?

I lost my child. What do I do?

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How do I get around this major construction project to access businesses on Yampa Street?

Where is the secret stash of parking spaces?

These are samples of the questions Main Street Manager Lisa Popovich thinks the ambassadors could help answer for Steamboat visitors.

Ambassadors also will help monitor downtown trash receptacles, gently remind visitors about rules, such as not biking on the sidewalks, and promoting events.

"This is something that I think is going to benefit the entire community," Popovich said. "It's kind of who we are. Every day, I watch people stop and give directions and volunteer where you should have lunch. It's natural, and I hope people want to do it in an official capacity."

The program is scheduled to launch in June.

Popovich said she's seeking about a dozen volunteers to staff the program on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Ambassadors will work in four-hour shifts.

While no paychecks are involved, Main Street is currently working to line up incentives for volunteers.

"Maybe you get a beer at one of the downtown restaurants or a discounted lunch," Popovich said.

Popovich said the program should be especially useful this summer, when a major downtown improvement project on Yampa Street will make it a bit trickier for people to find places to park and navigate with their tubes from the Yampa across the construction zone.

The idea for the program originated in a litter committee meeting.

Popovich said someone suggested having a person downtown to pick up trash and monitor receptacles, which often begin to overflow in the busy summer months.

"Who would want to do just that?," Popovich said.

F.M. Light & Sons is helping with uniform designs for the ambassador program.

Popovich said the ambassadors will be given a choice between a baseball cap or a cowboy hat.

"We're looking for people who love to hang out downtown," Popovich said.

To learn more about the program or to volunteer, email Popovich at info@mainstreetsteamboat.com.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10