Greg Canfield named person of the year 2014
Mr. Greg Canfield has been named the person of the year 2014 by the Lowell Area Chamber.
“I thought only old people get this title,” he laughed.
In the past, Greg along with his wife Deb were awarded the Brick Award 2011 for bringing back to life the three buildings owned by the Reedy’s and what is now the Main Street Inn. And of course the Canfield Plumbing & Heating business running fast for the last two decades.
“Our main focus is on the plumbing business,” said Canfield.
The rough winter has been a boom for the plumbing business. “We had to pick which customer needs our help the most,” he said. “We got 100 home calls.” The biggest problem was when people were gone, and the home got flooded or the pipes froze.
The plumbing business employs 15 full-time employees, while the Main Street Inn has eight part-time employees. However, the elegant Inn nestled on the Flat River is the talk of the town, and a lifeline to downtown businesses. The lobby has new additions that are rarities today,, an old red coke machine and a phone booth.
The favorite rooms are the ones overlooking the Flat River and the Showboat. One room is dedicated to prominent late citizen Ivan Blough for his love of the Showboat, the other one is the honeymoon suite. The 1880s building has no problems with plumbing, because it’s all new. During the remodel, Canfield moved the plumbing into the walls, and found out about the second story that was on the original building.
“It was a major undertaking,” Canfield said. “We had to pour new foundations on the river bottom. The building is 98 percent new.” There are seven guest rooms, three rooms are upstairs with a spacious community room. Four rooms are on the main level, along with the lobby and a conference room. The conference room is used by various groups such as the Flat River Watershed group as well as for bridal or baby showers, and wedding rehearsals.
“The plumbing business carries us,” Canfield said. “You can’t outsource that to China. The Inn brings people to downtown area. They can walk to Backwater Cafe. People love the art shops and the antiques.”
It is one of Canfield’s many goals to make Lowell a destination town like it used to be when the Flat River Antique Mall was still operating. This will include improving parking and handicap accessibility. As a member of the Downtown Development Authority, Canfield said the DDA is looking at developers seeking assistance.
Future plans include purchasing the 12,000 square-footMoose building and turning it into a pub, a banquet hall and a hotel on the third floor.
“It will be like an extension to the Inn.”
Canfield, now for his involvement in the historic district commission and Lowell Light & Power, the Downtown District Authority, and the construction board of appeals, is the man of the year.
“I am so humbled to be along the people who preceded me.” he said.
Canfield attributes his success to being surrounded by great people. “I am surrounded by my family, my wife, co-workers and neighbors. Lowell is a wonderful community.”
Canfield said he would do it all over again.
“It’s very rewarding helping people solve their problems,” he said.
Canfield has a handful of stories about cool people who had stayed at the Inn. A lady who was suffering from terminal cancer rented the entire building for the family to enjoy and celebrate her life.
“It’s a fun way to remember her,” he said.
At a different time, Canfield saw his guests from Las Vegas walking around Lowell and skyping from computers.
“It’s very humbling to be put along other people who have received this award,” he said. “I want to dabble in other things than plumbing.
Canfield, a history buff, likes to bring people to the Lowell historic district.
” I do it for the downtown, to bring people in,” he said in a recent interview. “I care for the community.”
Relevant links http://www.mainstreetinnlowell.com
:owell Area Chamber of Commerce: http://www.lowellchamber.org