Denton will host the annual Texas Downtown Conference this week for the first time in more than two decades.

The statewide conference, which connects communities committed to downtown development, will be held Wednesday through Friday afternoon. Attendees representing cities, economic development initiatives, chambers of commerce and businesses from across Texas will gather for the conference, which will feature breakout sessions, tours of downtown projects and keynote speakers. Denton last hosted the conference in 1999.

“Our local host committee is made up of board members from DMSA, city of Denton and Discover Denton, and local host sponsors have anticipated this conference coming to Denton for a few years,” Denton Main Street Association executive director Christine Gossett said. “We worked hard to put together a fun and educational downtown Denton experience for the attendees with our field sessions and events.”

Conference organizers will host an opening reception at Sunago Bell on Wednesday night from 5-6 p.m. followed by a sip-and-stroll walk through downtown until 7 p.m. Events will continue through Friday afternoon. Exhibits will be held at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Denton Convention Center.

Two downtown projects are also finalists for the Texas Downtown Association’s President’s Awards. The new American National Bank & Trust Building is a finalist for the Best New Construction Award for cities of 50,000 or more residents, and Sunago Bell is a finalist for the Best Commercial Interior for cities over 50,000. Winners will be announced at an awards gala Thursday night at the convention center.

Event sponsors include the city of Denton, Discover Denton and Texas Woman’s University, among others.

For more on the Texas Downtown Association, visit the organization’s website.

AMBER GAUDET can be reached at 940-566-6889 and via Twitter at @amb_balam.

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