Learn More About

Niantic Main Street

About the NMS Organization

The Niantic Main Street (NMS) organization is a 501c (3) not-for-profit (tax exempt) organization and a Non-Designated Member of the Connecticut Main Street Center. Comprised of all volunteers, the group is made up of a Board of Directors and various volunteers from within the community of East Lyme and the region. Reach out to us if you’re interested in becoming a volunteer with NMS today!

Volunteer Today

Our Mission & Vision

The mission of NMS is to help promote and implement downtown revitalization efforts in the commercial centers or villages of Niantic and Flanders, in the Town of East Lyme, Connecticut using recommendations in the April 1997 East Lyme Charrette Report and incorporating best practices including the comprehensive approach of the Connecticut Main Street Program.  The vision of NMS is to help create an inviting seaside village easily accessible by car, foot, boat and/or train.  It is a wonderful place to live, work and play, and a place where residents and visitors can gather for specialty shopping, creative entertainment and arts, specialty dining, and water activities within a village that has recaptured its historic past.

Board of Directors

  • Dan Walsh, President

  • Sue Kumro, Vice President

  • Teri Smith, Treasurer

  • Carol Faye, Secretary

  • John Schweizer

  • Steve Turner

  • Laura Westner

  • Rosemary Vann

  • Stanley Martone

  • Jim Capodiece

  • Dana Chapel

  • Josh Haderski

  • Kevin Seery, Ex-Officio

  • Rita Rivera, Board & Communications Consultant


  • Candy Shapiro

  • Pauline Lord

  • Richard Gada

  • Sonya Hoisington

  • Rob Waller

  • Colleen Gresh

Our Four Step Approach

NMS adheres to the National and Connecticut Main Street’s Four Step Approach:

Step 1: Organization

By focusing on consensus and cooperation, we have helped build a framework for sensible, community-driven programming – matching our community’s assets to its potential.

Step 2: Promotion

By enhancing the image of our downtown through retail promotions, special events and branding. Increasing the social value of our downtown will increase the economic value of our community.

Step 3: Design

By improving the physical value and appeal of downtown through both new construction and rehabilitation of historic and under-utilized buildings. We encourage design of public spaces for walking and gathering.

Step 4: Economic Restructuring

By increasing the economic value by encouraging diversity among current and new businesses suitable to the unique needs of a particular marketplace.

Our History

In 1997, East Lyme residents and business people successfully collaborated with the Yale School of Urban Design to create a vision for a more lively and prosperous community.  Following the study’s recommendation, Niantic Main Street was created and tapped into the expertise of state and national revitalization experts (i.e., the Connecticut Main Street Center and the respected National Main Street network). With an America the Beautiful grant, Niantic Main Street created a Master Streetscape Plan with input from design specialists. 

Based on Niantic Main Street’s work, the East Lyme planning department applied for and secured a state grant that funded over 61% of the nuts and bolts of basic construction. Niantic Main Street help raise additional funds for special materials that has helped make the difference between a good project and a great project: new streetlights, trees that are tolerant of drought and salt, curbing, a bicycle parking area, and both crosswalks and sidewalks that are accessible to families with strollers and those who are handicapped.

Restoring the historic beauty

Niantic Main Street Today

In 2010, Niantic Main Street saw the fruits of their labors with new sidewalks, new trees, new streetlights, new pavers, new curbs, new crosswalks and new flowerpots.  And lots and lots of people to thank, but we are not done yet. The initial phase has been funded with a state grant that was combined with private contributions raised by Niantic Main Street for a total of over $500,000 for the project. While the town pursues additional grants from the state, Niantic Main Street continues to seek contributions for this project that has restored Niantic to its historic beauty as one of Connecticut’s only waterfront downtown destinations.

And the names?  The names of friends, neighbors and businesses rest by the trees and on the streetlamps. By the crosswalks and on the flowerpots. These are the names of our contributors who committed to the project when the streetscape was only a vision, but is now a reality. Your name can be added to the list of people who love Niantic!

Community Support

Proud Members

Niantic Main Street is proud members of Connecticut Main Street & Main Street America

Help us continue the Streetscape

Have your donation recognized

Opportunities for recognition of a donation continue as the project rolls down the street. These naming opportunities allow individuals, businesses and organizations to show their support for Niantic or honor a loved one with this special gift to the town. Contact NMS for more info!

  • Decorative Streetlights

  • Beautiful, Healthy Trees

  • Crosswalks

  • Handicapped/Stroller Ramps

  • Granite Curbing

  • Bluestone Accents for Sidewalks

Niantic Main Street is a nonprofit, tax exempt (501)(c)(3) organization.
Your gift is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.