DerryNews.com, Derry, New Hampshire

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April 30, 2014

Downtown Derry gets new business perks

Broadway stalwarts welcome new businesses to downtown

DERRY — The lights on Broadway are shining for several new businesses and those who have called the downtown home for decades.

As town officials continue to talk about ways to make the downtown succeed, business owners are working hard to make ends meet and finding new ways to create profitable ventures to help Broadway thrive.

From parking issues to dilapidated storefronts, it's often difficult to create the downtown atmosphere many want to see in Derry.

With a downtown committee starting again and a renewed interest in landlord and blight enforcement issues, business owners weighed in on how they feel about Broadway and its future.

"The town seems to go in phases," said Dana Langley, owner of the Derry Barber Shop on West Broadway.

Langley has worked in town for decades and said he constantly strives to maintain a small town feel to his barbershop, servicing generations of families.

"I keep it simple, I have a good, regular clientele," he said. "I've been cutting their hair for years."

Established business owners like Langley hope for success not only for themselves, but also for the new faces taking over the empty storefronts.

There are still many vacant locations, but people are stopping by the town offices with ideas to fill some of them.

Planning Director George Sioras said there has been a recent surge in new business prospects downtown.

"We went from nothing to four businesses coming in within four to six weeks," he said. "It's often unexpected."

Drae, a new tapas restaurant, is now open for business, an example of someone with a good idea who wanted to open on Broadway.

"Drae came out of nowhere," Sioras said. "It's like pleasant surprises."

Drae owners Wendy and Derek Moody said they wanted to bring their love of food to their hometown.

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