'Small Business Revolution' producers make a stop in Searcy

(KATV Photo)

A show on the streaming platform "Hulu" is hoping to revitalize small towns across America. Thousands of cities applied to be featured on "Small Business Revolution," and Searcy has found themselves in the top 10.

It seemed as though every single resident was downtown Thursday evening. They were there to impress producers for the show on their search for the top five. "Each episode is about a different small business and their struggles and how we can help them run their business maybe more efficiently or help with marketing. So for us, the show is kind of one part inspiration, but it's also educational to other business owners," said the show's co-host Amanda Brinkman.

For the past 3 seasons, they have invested $500,000 into a small town and watched it transform. To narrow down the choices, producers have been visiting cities in the top 10 over the past month, and it's clear that Searcy residents want to be on that short list.

"It would be great if we got chosen, and they got to come in and help because I could use help badly with a lot of things," said Susan Nolte, owner of Glass from the Past

Even former governor and Searcy resident Mike Beebe came out to show his support. He said, "Searcy is the kind of place where people do help each other. It has been my home since I got out of law school way back in the early 70s. So, it makes you feel good to see the community pride and the camaraderie."

But there's really one thing the "Small Business Revolution" team is looking for in terms of the top five. Brinkman added, "Half a million dollars can only go so far. We have to really find a town that already has some momentum behind it, has community residents that are willing to work alongside us so that we can partner together to take the town to the next level." And by the looks of it, Searcy is up for that task.

The show is only halfway done visiting the chosen small towns, and they plan to announce who made the cut for top five mid-February. If Searcy does make it to the next round, it's up to public vote as to which town gets that half a million dollar main street makeover.

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