WAUSAU – The Wausau River District is putting the spotlight on Black entrepreneurs in downtown Wausau during Black History Month, recognized across the nation in February.

Diversity through Design. Photo courtesy Wausau River District.

“This is the first time in our city’s history that we have Black entrepreneurs in downtown Wausau” said Executive Director Blake Opal-Wahoske.

Downtowns that welcome diverse voices often experience increased economic vitality, productivity and innovation, he said. Cultural diversity also brings opportunities for entertainment, education and communal growth. 

“It sounds like a no-brainer,” Opal-Wahoske said, “but it can’t be overstated how important it is for our businesses and larger downtown community to work together to make Wausau a great place to live, work and play.”

The Wausau River District also unveiled in February its Diversity through Design street pole banner project. A banner revamp provided an opportunity to highlight Wausau’s diverse communities and encourage visual representation and inclusivity in the downtown district. 

Black-owned businesses within the district include Eboni Fashion, Fearless Fashion 101, Layla’s Beauty Stop and Big Beauties Boutique.