Local group wants to make Borger vibrant again

Jamie Neumann, owner of Neumann & Bailey gift shop and coffee shop.The back of the "Project Build Borger" T-shirt.
Tim Howsare

Jamie Neumann, owner of the Neumann & Bailey gift and coffee shop on North Main Street, has a passion for Borger.
“I love Borger,” she said. “The people here are its greatest treasure.”
Neumann moved to Borger from Kansas with her dad in 1991.
She remembers a dress shop in the downtown, along with other clothing stores for both women and men.
“There weren't a whole lot of empty spaces back then,” she said of the downtown.
And then, it seemed, businesses started leaving the downtown.
But recently, Neumann said, there has a been “a breath of fresh air” as places in the downtown have started to fill up again.
“There is a sense of community that is coming back to Borger,” she said.
And it is that sense of community on which Neumann hopes to build.
In December 2018, the business owner organized a group called Project Build Borger, which Neumann describes as “a group of people from all different places of business who are banding together to help build Borger.”
Their motto, which appears on the front of black T-shirts on sale to raise money for the group, is “Bring Back the Boom.”
On the back of the T-shirt are the names of local businesses, organizations and individuals who support the group. Local illustrator Christine Burney did a design on the back of the shirt with images of an oil refinery and pump jacks.
According to its Facebook page, the group intends to “promote tourism, culture, and arts in Borger by organizing community events and activities that celebrate our unique history, create and preserve town traditions, and demonstrate a sense of community pride.”
Neumann said the group worked with the Downtown Merchants Association on the Hometown Christmas last December, in which there were horse and carriage rides, vendors, movies and a bell choir.
In the spring, Project Build Borger held a mixer at another downtown business called At the Ranch.
The group is now planning another mixer at Huber Park called At the Park. The event will be held from 7 to 9 on Thursday, July 25.
Planned activities include, horseshoes, volleyball and basketball.
Neumann said there also will be food trucks.
Neumann said that aside from the churches, there's not many places in Borger where people can network.
She said Project Build Borger is working to get nonprofit status. Right now there are seven board members and many volunteers.
Neumann said the group wants to be involved with this year's Hometown Christmas along with a New Year's event.
“The goal of Project Build Borger is to bring life back to Borger,” she said.
The group meets the first Tuesday of every month at 8 a.m. at Neumann & Baileys, 503 N. Main St.
To find out more about Project Build Borger, send a message on Facebook, email projectbuildborger@gmail.com call to 806-464-5200.