13th Street District continues development
Most cities and towns have a neighborhood that stands out from the others and is a major tourism spot. Marshalltown has the 13th Street District.
The 13th Street District is located on the northwest side of town. It is a growing and developing area which has the potential as a tourism hot spot for Marshalltown.
“It’s been fantastic,” 13th Street District Board Member Aimee Deimerly-Snyder said.
The growth of the district can be seen in the amount of businesses that make up the small district.
“The spread has been fabulous. It’s full now. There’s no openings, no vacancies in any of the stores,” Deimerly-Snyder said “That’s been great as well, the community has really supported the revitalization of this district.”
13th Street District Board President Kirsten Schmit said it’s an “exciting privilege” to see what the neighborhood has become.
“It has been an exciting privilege to watch the growth of the 13th St. District over the past 10 years”, she said. “With the support of hard working volunteers, vibrant and unique businesses and community partners, the 13th St District has grown into a destination of its own, right here in Marshalltown.”
One of the businesses located in the 13th Street District will be The Flying Elbow, a restaurant which serves sandwiches and over-the-top hot dogs. The Flying Elbow isn’t a new restaurant in Marshalltown, but is a new resident of the 13th Street District. The business’ move to the 13th Street District was one that was kind of forced to happen.
Previously, The Flying Elbow was on Center Street but then the tornado hit. The restaurant had to move from its building to a food truck on the same street, which it still currently operates out of.
Garrett and Dani Goodman, co-owners of The Flying Elbow, said since its inception, the restaurant has run into its fair share of obstacles.
“This has been the hardest three years of our life,” Garrett. “We’ve had countless obstacles. We did everything we could to get the downtown going, spent a lot of money, we were under insured and didn’t know what we were up against.”
He said they had planned on rebuilding downtown but couldn’t because of the pandemic.
“We went through the whole process to get back to work having a restaurant downtown and then we came to October and the small business administration said no,” Garrett said. “On top of that, we’re in the middle of a global pandemic, which is ultimately why the Small Business Administration said we couldn’t build downtown.”
The Flying Elbow is scheduled to debut its 13th Street District location in mid-August, according to Garrett.
To get into their new location, They got in touch with John Hermansson of Hermansson Orthodontics, who owned property at 229 N 13th St. and wanted to set up a restaurant there.
“Thankfully, we made a deal with John Hermanson to come into his building here and he’s been an excellent I guess landlord,” Garrett said. “We consider him a partner almost. He’s not part of The Flying Elbow, but he’s got a vision for 13th Street, and we fit into his vision for 13th Street.”
Garrett said the community’s excitement has remained the same since they first opened up shop in 2017.
“The fact that the town hasn’t forgotten about us, like our customers, our support system, our elbow maniacs, as we lovingly call them, the fact that we’re three years removed, and there’s still this much excitement about our business, it really keeps us going,” he said.
That excitement has already paid dividends in the food truck according to Garrett.
“We’ve been doing record numbers in the food truck. Everyone’s so excited when they come to the truck,” Goodman said. “It’s all good vibes, like, we love our customers and I think it’s reciprocated. We’re getting a lot of support from the town.”
Appetizers will be added to the menu at The Flying Elbow, such as cold sides, scratch made corn dogs and some pre-made salads. This will go along with a beer, wine, and cocktail menu.
Garrett said the inside capacity will be around 30 and there are plans to build a deck, which has been delayed due to government requirements. A mural on the outside of the building is still in place but Garrett is unsure if that’ll be a “day one” thing.
No official hours have been announced but hours might be something like 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Thursday and untill 10 or 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
The restaurant offers something unique to the 13th Street District.
“No one’s doing what we’re doing in Marshalltown let alone the 13th Street District,” Garrett said.
Garrett said he and Dani are most excited about opening up the restaurant is to be able to end a chapter and begin a new one.
“We didn’t get into the restaurant business to design restaurants that start from scratch once or twice a year. So I think we’re most excited just to move on to the next chapter and have the stability of always being open and not having to start from scratch all over again multiple times,” he said. “We’re finally getting to close a chapter and start a new one.”
The interior design of the restaurant will be “very modern and very clean,” and similar to what the old restaurant downtown was. As the name would suggest, there will be classic wrestling memorabilia and merchandise on display.
“I’ve got a collection of memorabilia from myself and from customers and friends. They bring it over so we’ve got a lot of really cool old merchandise and iconic stuff,” Garrett said.
Once The Flying Elbow officially opens up in The 13th Street District, it willl be the new establishment on the block and around some older Marshalltown establishments.
Lillie Mae Chocolates has called The 13th District home for a year In addition to being a board member of the 13th Street District, Deimerly-Snyder is a co-owner of Lillie Mae Chocolates. She said business has been great since the location opened up in August 2020.
“Our customers have just been fabulous. supporting us. I think people were really ready for something new, and with the pandemic going on, it was just a great time to reopen,” she said.
Lillie Mae’s sells a wide variety of chocolates and caramels that can be bought in assortment boxes. Deimerly-Snyder said there are some new items they have added.
“We’re really excited about our new kernels. We’ve got a handcrafted espresso bean caramel that’s been very popular, and we also have a sea salt caramel,” she said.
Customers can find Lillie Mae Chocolates. and the shop is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.
Deimerly-Snyder said the businesses and the owners in the district are a tight-knit group.
“It’s a group of really nice retailers and business owners down here that really stick together,” she said. “It’s just a fun little district because there is a little bit of something for everybody.”
In total, there are 10 businesses as well as a park in the 13th Street District.
Those businesses include:
• The Chop Shop Salon, 204 N. 13th St.
• Nourish, 209 N. 13th St.
• The Spot, 217 Ω N. 13th St.
• Lillie Mae Chocolates 217 N. 13th St.
• The Flying Elbow, 229 N. 13th St.
• West End Perk, 231 N. 13th St.
• Salvation Army Thrift Store, 232 N. 13th St.
• Hermanson Orthopedics, 233 N. 13th St.
• Be Unique Flower Boutique, 234 N. 13th St.
• C Eye Care, 236 N. 13th St.
Besides business, there are other reasons to hang out in the district. Residents can strolling through the updated West End Park.
“I’ve heard great things about it. That they’re just finally getting back to the way it used to be before the tornado knocked down the shelter,” Marshalltown Parks and Recreation Director Geoff Hubbard said.
Phase two of the updating plan is in the works which includes adding a concessions area and rebuild the tornado shelter. Phase two is scheduled to be finished in 2022, but it could be done in 2023, depending on funding, according to Hubbard.
Hubbard said the park fits in great with the district.
“When we got to redesign the park, we got a lot of feedback and input from the 13th Street group about what the park could be,” he said. “We talked about all kinds of different things that could happen in the park, what we envisioned the uses of, and then made those changes. I think it definitely fits in well with the 13th Street overall and is a very usable, viable space for them.”
Throughout a normal calendar year, the 13th Street District plays host to many events. This includes municipal band performances, yoga sessions, a car show and a Harvest Market.
Schmit said the neighborhood provides betterments for the community.
“The 13th Street District brings about civic betterments and social improvements in the district and surrounding neighborhoods for the benefit of all; a place where the history of the past intertwines with the present and the future; a place where the spirit of our community really comes alive. The 13th Street District is proud to offer our community a unique and beautiful district in Marshalltown,” She said.
Contact Sam Stuve at 641-753-6611