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YCIDA to restore 1926 Yorktowne mural with historic preservation grant

Lindsey O'Laughlin
York Dispatch
Construction continues on the Yorktowne Hotel Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019. Costs to renovate a historic York City hotel have nearly doubled since the project was announced in April 2017. Bill Kalina photo

A historic piece of the Yorktowne Hotel will be restored and preserved for future generations thanks to the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

The York County Industrial Development Authority secured a $15,000 grant from the trust to restore a mural discovered in the hotel lobby during renovations, said Katie Mahoney, spokeswoman for the YCIDA.

The mural is painted on the wall but had been covered up for years, she said. It depicts a street scene of guests arriving at the hotel.

"The mural is a vestige to our past just like the Yorktowne Hotel, and it’s incumbent on an organization like ours to protect and preserve it for the community to enjoy for the next 100 years," said Kevin Schreiber, president of the York County Economic Alliance. 

Cornelius Hicks, the artist, painted the mural in 1926 as a one-year anniversary gift for the hotel, Mahoney said.

The development authority also secured a $10,000 grant from the Women's Giving Circle to fund the commission of works by local artists to be added to the hotel.

Business school: In addition to the art grants, the development authority recently announced two business courses being offered at no charge to local entrepreneurs and contractors.

The first course, "Small Business Start Up," will include five sessions covering topics such as financing a business, managing human resources, marketing and accounting.

Sessions will be held once a week beginning July 25 and ending Aug. 22.

The second course, "In Construction," is for contractors looking to learn more about about the bidding process for large projects such as the Yorktowne Hotel.

The bidding course will include seven sessions covering topics including local, state and federal contracts, certifications, how to decide whether to bid a project and contract compliance.

"If you’ve never done a public bid before, there’s an educational process involved, and it’s time consuming," Schreiber said.

The goal of the bidding course is help expedite that learning process so small, locally owned businesses are better able to compete in the marketplace.

The courses are being offered via a partnership with Harrisburg Area Community College's York campus, the York County Economic Alliance, Crispus Attucks and Small Business Development Center Pennsylvania.

Participants who complete all sessions of their selected course will be eligible to apply for a small business grant from the YCEA, Schreiber said.

For more information or to register, contact Michaela Cumor at mcumor@yceapa.org or 717-771-4579.