From Staff Reports
Urban Boondocks has been named as the best new business in Yukon by a state group.
Urban Boondocks, a Yukon Main Street business, received the “Best New Business” award this week from the Oklahoma Main Street Center.
On a roadside property along State Highway 66 in Yukon, previously stood a dilapidated historic building with infinite potential, neglected in vacant disrepair for over a decade, according to a news release from the Oklahoma Main Street Center.
“Fortunately, a lifelong local family with big dreams saw the spark of a bright soul shining through the dingy windows of its exterior, and embarked on a rewarding journey to make “LOCAL” a way of life on Yukon’s historic Main Street.”
On this forgotten plot of land along America’s Highway, owner Desiree Reid and family envisioned a bustling market infused with the collective energy of a spirited community and meaningful wares—a place where you find exactly what you never even knew you needed, whether something tangible, an inspiring idea, or a friendly connection. They had finally discovered the perfect home for Urban Boondocks Market, a vibrant, unique shop “for old souls & American Dreamers.” Rehabilitating the building at 115 W. Main Street themselves, Desiree and her family carefully preserved its historic integrity through extensive repairs and updates, staying true to the 70+ year old structure. Original doors, windows, exposed beam ceiling, and cinderblock walls, as well as the steel workbench (turned customer service counter) pay homage to its rich Main Street history, both inside and out. The neglected backyard and expansive side patio were refreshed and revitalized, ready to host community events and gatherings. Day in and day out, their labor of love shined brighter as they salvaged a forgotten part of Yukon’s Main Street, creating a road-trip-worthy destination in the place of a pass through stretch of road, substantially increasing property value both tangibly and intangibly. After roughly 18 months of personally rehabilitating this soulful old building on Route 66, Urban Boondocks Market opened on March 15, 2018, since drawing eager customers, locally and statewide, the release states.
Both literally and figuratively, Urban Boondocks Market has drawn Main Street businesses and the community closer. In addition to physical connectivity, walkability, and design improvements on Yukon’s Main Street, they have built extremely positive personal and professional relationships with fellow local businesses and neighbors, supporting, networking, and connecting through events, ideas, and cross-promotion. Fundraisers for local charities, shop crawls, celebrations, and block parties have intertwined commerce and spurred a sense of cohesiveness for our community along Main Street. Additionally, the owners have assumed roles on the Main Street Promotions committee, aimed at supporting and promoting the vitality of Main Street as a whole, and are contributing members of the Yukon Chamber of Commerce, according to the news release.
Creating a thriving, community-centered business in a formerly abandoned segment of Main Street generates substantial new tax revenue and drastically increases property value along historic Route 66, further drawing fresh business interest to the area.
Urban Boondocks Market adds tangible value to existing commerce through its unique concepts, goods, and approaches, attracting young creatives and old souls from all over the state to enjoy a vintage, artsy vibe, more commonly found in urban areas of OKC. Through well-curated social media, being one of few Route 66 shops chronicled on TravelOK.com, and their recent feature on Discover Oklahoma, Urban Boondocks Market has increased traffic to Yukon, encouraging customers to explore & invest in all Main Street businesses, creating a cohesive commercial corridor and strengthening local shopping, dining and service trends.
Drawing on longstanding dynamics of thriving historic Main Street districts, Urban Boondocks Market sees their business as merely a part of the collective economic vitality of the area, championing other businesses and our neighbors to revitalize our history together, according to the news release from the center.