Nestled away in downtown Columbia, Missouri inside a wall of law offices, colleges, hospitals, a giant university, a county courthouse, City Hall and government buildings, sporting events and parade traffic lies an oasis. A charming village full of renovated and repurposed buildings, warehouses, and shops where art, music and small businesses flourish. For example, find over 150 artists working out of studios, film companies, dance studios, design companies, musicians and live performance spaces, galleries, nightclubs, a theatre, restaurants, cafes, shops, yoga studios, a distillery, a farmers and artisans market, and a monthly art walk.
Columbia has a great downtown, known as the District. It is full of all types of different small businesses. We have clothing stores, consignment, furniture, restaurants, bars, tattoo shops, music venues, art galleries, theaters, book stores, record stores, all within walking distance. I am proud of the District for not bringing in those larger chains. Many of the stores focus on handmade craft goods, made locally or in the USA. The landlords have taken these old buildings and, instead of tearing them down, embraced their character, which consequently preserves history and makes for a unique downtown.