Martinsville, Virginia


Uptown Sweets Receives Tourism Marketing Grant

The Martinsville-Henry County EDC's Tourism & Film Division (VisitMartinsville) recently awarded a tourism marketing grant to Uptown Sweets, a new retail business located on Church Street in Uptown Martinsville.

Uptown Sweets, owned by Colleen Butker, is a bakery that specializes in gourmet cupcakes, cake pops and custom-designed cakes. The store carries a variety of vintage and bulk candies, as well as other gift items, and also hosts birthday parties and classes.

Butker applied for a Tourism Marketing Grant from the EDC to acquire matching funds to market her new business. The grant program funds 50% of approved marketing project costs up to $1,000.

The first project to be completed for Uptown Sweets is a window sign and wrap-around border that accentuates the historic Holt building's windows. The sign was designed locally and installed by What's Your Sign? of Martinsville. According to Butker, "The new sign has increased visibility and generated awareness of the products that we offer. It has also created a fun and inviting atmosphere at the shop." The remainder of Butker's grant funds will be used on business cards, vehicle decals and other marketing tools. Since opening, the business has created five additional jobs and has provided training opportunities through college and high school internships.

According to Jennifer Doss, Director of Tourism for Martinsville-Henry County, "It has been a joy to work with Butker and the staff of Uptown Sweets on this grant project. The new signage paired with cheerful window displays instantly brightened up the corner of Church and Bridge Streets in Martinsville, making the area much more attractive to visitors."

A limited number of marketing grants are still available to tourism related businesses and events. An application is available online at or by emailing

Additional information about this and other area shopping venues is available online at and at the state-certified Martinsville-Henry County Visitor Center at 54 West Church Street in Martinsville.