Berlin Claims ‘Best Small Town For Shopping’ Honor In Online Poll

Berlin Claims ‘Best Small Town For Shopping’ Honor In Online Poll
File photo by Charlene Sharpe

BERLIN – The town added yet another honor to its growing list of accolades with a national designation last week.

On May 18 Berlin was named “America’s Best Small Town for Shopping in 2018” by USA Today. The recognition was the result of an online poll.

“What a special honor this year as our town celebrates our 150th anniversary,” Mayor Gee Williams said. “It’s a complement to our basic principle of encouraging residents and guests alike to enjoy our 19th century charm while experiencing 21st century living, all with a touch of class and a healthy dose of whimsy.”

This latest recognition came after USA Today nominated 20 small towns and invited the public to vote on their favorite. During the past several weeks, Economic Development Director Ivy Wells has encouraged residents and visitors to vote for Berlin in the online poll. For some time, the town was sitting second behind Lewes, Del. When final votes were tallied however, Berlin made it into the top spot, with Lewes and Sequim, Washington rounding out the top three.

“We have the best merchants in the country,” Wells said. “Thank you to everyone who voted for us.”

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Since being named “America’s Coolest Small Town” in 2014 by Budget Travel, Berlin has been named “Best Town to Visit” by Smithsonian Magazine and was among the “Top 20 Most Beautiful Towns” presented by Architectural Digest. On the website for the town’s Main Street program, there are more than two dozen awards listed that the town has captured during the last four years.

According to Wells, the online polls and recognitions are critical to the town’s economic success.

“It brings awareness,” she said. “We live here and work here but there are so many people out there that don’t know we exist.”

Wells said local merchants were extremely active on social media and did their part to promote the various online contests.

“The business owners are very good at that,” she said.

Wells said she monitors website analytics and always sees an increase in online traffic following an award.

“The more we’re in the news the more people are aware of Berlin,” she said.

About The Author: Charlene Sharpe

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Charlene Sharpe has been with The Dispatch since 2014. A graduate of Stephen Decatur High School and the University of Richmond, she spent seven years with the Delmarva Media Group before joining the team at The Dispatch.