Marshall In Motion is a local volunteer group of concerned citizens who formed an organization under the auspices of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Community Affairs. This is part of a statewide program called Competitive Cities Initiative, which challenges local citizens to look at their town, analyze the strong and weak points and make efforts to build on the strong points and improve the weak points in a structured program. Marshall In Motion encompasses the entire Marshall School District.
In July 1997, a steering committee was formed to get the organization off the ground. In October 1997, the name Marshall In Motion was coined. Citizens were invited to a series of three community meetings in February, March and April of 1998. Seventy-three people attended, and from these meetings a list of approximately twenty priority goals was listed. These objectives were divided among six committees. In May of 1998, a local citizen, Amy Yargus, was hired to coordinate activities. The various committees met and discussed the issues assigned to each committee. By December of 1999, several of the goals were completed but the committee decided to disband for a while. In February 2001 reorganization took place with a new steering committee that set three major goals: Recreation, Tourism, and Economic Development.
During the summer of 2001, the City of Marshall was enrolled in the University of Illinois Rural Recreation Program. The university provided a graduate student in the field of Leisure Studies to become the local director. The city selected three high school students as assistant directors. Approximately 60 youngsters signed up for the program that provided supervised activities three days a week from 9 a.m. to noon for a period of 10 weeks. This program was so successful that the following summer the program was expanded to permit parents to drop off their children before the parent had to go to work. It was expanded to five days a week with a local director and trained local people to assist.
The second objective of tourism is being undertaken in cooperation with Marshall Main Street. Tourism is a program in which every citizen can become involved. All the necessary ingredients are already here; all we need is some promotion to encourage people to visit the area. In this regard, Marshall in Motion encouraged the development of a city web site.
Several groups supported by Marshall in Motion are the Clark County Trails Coalition, now a part of the Clark County Park District located at Mill Creek Park. This organization joins with C.A.M.A. to sponsor a bicycle rally, each 1st Saturday in June that consists of four different lengths. This accommodates youth riders, casual riders, and professional riders. Other seasonal rides are planned throughout the year. This goes along with their 1st goal of Recreation.
Marshall has seven properties listed on the National Register of Historic places. One of these is Harlan Hall; an 1870’s opera house recently restored using approximately 2500 hours of volunteer labor hours to help reduce costs of the interior restoration. In 2010, Harlan Hall was awarded the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Preservation Award from Landmarks Illinois.
Marshall is a member of the National Road Association of Illinois. It is the first town in Illinois on this historic highway and is home to the National Road Interpretive Center located in Harlan Hall.
The Great Race Organization, a group of early 20th century race cars, selected Marshall as their stop three times. In 2003, Marshall was voted “Best Lunch Stop” by the drivers resulting in a $500 donation to our Public Library.
Marshall in Motion’s 2nd goal of Tourism continues to be a priority and Marshall in Motion sponsored two Community Swap programs and encouraged organizations to apply for the Governor’s Home Town Award yielding two awards.
Marshall in Motion hosted the Trend Benders program that revealed data pertinent in the attraction of a new Assisted Living Facility. Another result of support from Marshall in Motion was the establishment of two Medicine Cabinet collections, a gathering of old out-dated or unused prescription drugs. The popularity of this program has led to the establishment of a permanent site available at all times.
Eighty Three local volunteers were honored for their volunteerism over the years with a Marshall Pride Award.
Another group supported by Marshall in Motion is the Marshall Leadership Team, a group of high school students who meet quarterly to learn and practice leadership skills.
In January 2010, a Community Chat was held and 50 people attended to give their input as to what the community needs. Several suggestions were advanced and one program titled “Careers in Motion” was established which enabled undecided high school graduates to go to the high school or public library to look through a book listing of local and regional employers to see local employment opportunities available. Several other suggestions are in the process of being addressed. Another Chat is scheduled for February 3, 2011 to give the public another opportunity to voice their ideas.
Marshall in Motion’s 3rd goal of Economic Development has been implemented by the City of Marshall with the hiring of Julie Bounds as Economic Development Director. The addition of this position enabled the City to focus on retail recruitment including a larger Wal-Mart store, establishment of more eateries and small businesses. Tourism is also a concentration in addition to her conventional duties. Business retention is equally important and the City partners with local and regional organizations to bring information to existing businesses.
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Marshall in Motion has been beneficial to the City of Marshall and will continue to do so in the future.
Marshall Pride Award
Marshall Pride Award Winners