Branding Committee Clarifies Bandstand Position

The “Simply Brilliant” Oskaloosa rebranding project continues to move forward with community improvements, while the Brand Leadership Team (BLT) clarifies that the downtown revitalization efforts will not include moving the bandstand.

The Oskaloosa BLT has spent several months evaluating the recommendations for rebranding the City of Oskaloosa, as presented by Roger Brooks International, Inc. The BLT is pleased with the excitement about many of the projects moving forward, such as developing a new wayfinding system and conducting a market analysis to attract new downtown businesses. These recommendations came after numerous planning sessions and interviews with key community leaders, starting in September of 2014.

The Brand Action Plan, which will outline opportunities the BLT plans to act on, will be available for the public in July. The report written by Brooks and his team, does not call for, nor did it ever call for, moving or removing the bandstand. It calls for creating a business plan with more programming in the town square to draw residents and visitors to spend more time in the park, and shopping and dining downtown.

According to Oskaloosa Main Street President Josh Buckingham, Brooks presented a conceptual idea of moving the bandstand at his brand unveiling presentation in February 2015. “Brooks is an expert in tourism, community branding, downtown development and marketing. He has worked with hundreds of communities worldwide to make them viable tourism destinations, so we hired him to make recommendations on how Oskaloosa could become the same,” said Buckingham. “Brooks’ goal was to give residents and tourists more reasons to go downtown, which he says would provide the foot traffic needed for new and existing businesses to be sustainable.”

Members of the BLT understand and appreciate the historical significance of this landmark, and also appreciate the impact the proposed improvements could have on the Oskaloosa community and its residents. The BLT does not support and will not pursue moving or removing the bandstand as part of that effort.

“We want our downtown to be a go-to place, and are impressed with the outpouring of support to make Oskaloosa a more vibrant community while still honoring Oskaloosa’s heritage,” said Buckingham. “We look forward to working with community groups, volunteers and residents who are excited and passionate to define programming and improvements.”

Any residents interested in helping implement the Brand Action Plan are encouraged to contact Oskaloosa Main Street Director Karen Hafner, 641-672-2591 or email her at


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