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First Fridays return downtown

The new monthly event will feature local artists and entertainment throughout the central downtown business district, officials say.

— The Downtown Merchants Association, in conjunction with the downtown manager's office, is launching a new monthly event to coincide with the Urban Garage Sale weekend, officials say.

The First Fridays event will return downtown but in a completely different form, Downtown Manager Aaron Blair said.

Past Event

First Fridays

  • Friday, April 6, 2012, 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • ,
  • All ages / Free

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This version of the event will essentially be an art walk through downtown and among some of the downtown merchants to peruse art, take in some music and entertainment while patronizing downtown businesses.

"Basically the merchants association has been looking at something else they can do to bring people down, but not be a midnight-like event," Blair said. "This event is something new and fresh and won't replace our Nights@Dtown event."

Blair said the event mirrors similar ones in other towns that feature downtown art galleries.

"But since we don't have the galleries, we're spreading our art out through downtown among the merchants who will stay out later for the event. Some will have their own music and entertainment," he said.

Blair said that he's reaching out to some of the classic car clubs to bring some of their classic and custom cars downtown for the event.

The first event is slated for April 6 and will complement a two-day series of events downtown.

On Saturday, April 7, downtown will play host to the Urban Garage Sale, an ongoing, monthly event that allows anyone to reserve a space downtown to sell their wares.

GABE's Bridal and alterations on Broad Avenue is the place to reserve a spot, Blair said.

It's not the first time some type of "Friday" event has gone on downtown.

Blair's predecessor used his downtown manager fund to pay for musicians to come downtown to the government plaza on Pine Avenue once per month to play during the lunch hours.

Downtown also played host to Fridays on the Flint, which sought to use the Flint River as a locale for end-of-the-week get-togethers.