Bringing Downtown Back! - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Bringing Downtown Back!

September 7, 2007

Albany - - Friday nights in Albany are coming alive. A new monthly event to attract people downtown kicked off Friday evening. It's called Fridays on the Flint. 

We took a stroll in Downtown Albany at lunch time. A few people here, a few there, but no heavy traffic.

"This is my second time only coming down here for some ice cream," says Landon Dooley.

He and his wife admit downtown isn't all they'd expect it to be.

"I think it needs a lot of improvement," Sabrina Dooley says.

Over the past year, several downtown businesses have closed, many vacant buildings wait to be leased, and two finalists who applied for a Downtown Manager's job took their name out of the running.

"They've already done a lot of changes but there's still certain areas you don't want to go and certain places where you have nice buildings but in between run down buildings with broken windows," S. Dooley says.

So Friday, Albany Tomorrow kicked off First Fridays on the Flint. A monthly event with entertainment, vendors, and businesses open late.

"We definitely want to be open and cater to the people who will be down here enjoying the band," says Abdu Shumboro, owner of Two Scoops.

He is staying open a couple hours later to welcome visitors.

"We just want to encourage more people to come down and enjoy their evening and their free time," Shumboro says.

His hope is they'll come and keep coming.

"It's nice down here. I just don't get to come down here that often," L. Dooley says.

The event is held at the corner of South Jackson and Broad Avenue. It begins at 5 PM on First Fridays and ends at 10 PM.

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