verdi eco school

People make the difference.

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Every summer, the state of Florida Main Street office holds a statewide conference of about 50 main street programs and hosts an awards dinner. Individual main streets submit their accomplishments that fall under one of the four points of main street — design, organization, promotion and economic vitality. EGAD has won 13 awards since opening in 2010. You’re going to have to trust me, that’s a lot.

This past July at the conference in Orlando, EGAD won two awards:

—Merit Award for Outstanding Rehabilitation Project, Ginter Building (Frank Schrader, Real Estate Direct)
—Merit Award for Outstanding Local Program Supporter, Ayana Verdi (Verdi Eco School)

To renovate an historic property is no small feat; in fact, it’s a daring and frightening undertaking. You probably have horror stories from renovating your own home built in the 1960s. Contractor Clifford C. Ginter built the Ginter Building in 1926, at the height of the land boom. This is the second Clifford Ginter building Frank has renovated; the first one being a house over by the Rossetter House. Frank said Ginter was ahead of his time by having conduit for wiring, not a standard technique in his day. The Ginter Building had a rotted walls due to water damage, a leaky roof, and a skylight. It was a humongous undertaking with a surprise at every turn. Rehabbing old buildings is a vital part of downtown economic development and Frank’s efforts were recognized by the entire state.

Hear all about the Ginter Building on the Florida Humanities Council app “Florida Stories.” Download it from your app store, put on some ear buds and drive thru EGAD and take the tour. By the way, EGAD is the only city in Brevard to be included in the Humanities Council app—a feather in our cap for sure.

Download from your APP store

Download from your APP store

Click to enlarge photo


Ayana Verdi has enough energy and creativity to launch a SpaceX rocket. Her professional accomplishments since moving here from Brooklyn, with her ex-police officer and 9/11 responder husband, John, would make many of us. feel like executive slackers. Establishing the urban farm school using EGAD as its campus was an idea she brought to fruition in just a few years. All ideas fail due to lack of preparation or execution. The Verdi Eco School is a wild success and the aftershocks of that whirlwind have deeply benefited EGAD’s merchants. A new recipient of the Drexel Fund Fellowship and mother of two, Ayana has been a true supporter of the Main Street idea.

Ayana Verdi, Verdi Eco School

Ayana Verdi, Verdi Eco School



EGAD loves to take every opportunity to thank George Alexander, owner of Eau Gallie Ace Hardware, for his contribution to our December Holiday Tree Lighting. Making events happen requires meetings and volunteers. George walked into the office and said, “I’ve got Christmas.” He’s pulled his friends and contacts and city staff together for the past few years to create a classic village scene. Don’t miss it this December 6 pm. Santa will be there, seasonal live music and Irish Coffees at the bar.