TERRE HAUTE —
Pavement pounding party people plan to pounce on the ’Bash this weekend.
Organizers of the second annual Downtown Block Party were chalking the streets Thursday afternoon, finishing preparations for this weekend’s festival between Fourth and Ninth streets along Wabash Avenue. Ariane Marie King, operations coordinator for Downtown Terre Haute Inc., said last year’s inaugural event drew more than 10,000 people throughout the day.
“And it’s going to be bigger this year, so much bigger,” she said inside Crossroads Cafe after a meeting with event organizers. “This year we’re doubling our vendors.”
More than 120 artists and non-profit agencies will line the streets, dotting the paths between five stages with live music, a motorcycle and car show, as well as downtown restaurants selling food outdoors. The free event kicks off at 1 p.m. Saturday, running through midnight.
“It really is a full day of nonstop activity for folks of all ages,” King said.
Down the street at Lynn’s Boutique, Jessica Aden was readying the store, which just opened in March.
“I’m from Florida, so this is my first year for the Block Party,” she said. “We’ll be here all day too. Our hours will be later.”
Marla Flowers, president of Downtown Terre Haute Inc., said the event’s focus will be on local businesses in the area.
“I think it’s an excellent opportunity for all the downtown merchants to showcase their wares,” she said, noting food will be sold by local restaurants all along the strip. “And I think Mother Nature is going to cooperate, and we’re all excited about that.”
Weather forecasts call for sunny skies and temperatures in the low 90s, but area musicians plan to keep the five stages hot all day long.
Mike Rowe of the Crowe Committee said this will be his group’s first year to perform at the event.
“I think it’s a great event for the community,” the long-time musician said. His group plays on the stage near Fourth Street and Wabash Avenue between 5 and 8 p.m., bringing classic rock by the likes of the Beatles, Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd to the mix. “I think it’s wonderful any time you can do an outdoors event and showcase the downtown.”
King said a Kids Zone will be hosted by the Terre Haute Children’s Museum near Eighth Street, offering painted faces and animal balloons throughout the day. Meanwhile, a cornhole tournament with prizes will begin at 6:30 p.m. near Fifth Street. Wells Fargo Stagecoach Rides will be offered throughout the day from 1 to 4 p.m. The Academy of Dance will perform “Hansel and Gretel” beginning at 1:30 p.m. near Crossroads Plaza, while the Swingin’ Mates Square Dancers will perform there beginning at 5 p.m. Terre Haute YMCA Zumba classes will offer demonstrations beginning at 6 p.m. at that location.
Paul Bertsch of the Paul Bertsch Band said he and his crew will perform between 1 and 4 p.m. at Fifth Street.
“We’re going to play a lot of originals,” he said, describing his works as a mix of classic rock and blues. “A lot of singer-songwriter material. Hopefully it will be a decent mix for a lot of tastes.”
The band’s CD, “Red Dirt Road,” will be available, and Bertsch said this is one the many great things Terre Haute does downtown.
“I think it will be a fun atmosphere, a great chance to get our music out and a great chance to be a part of the Terre Haute community,” he said. “There’s not a lot not to like.”
Brian Boyce can be reached at 812-231-4253 or email@example.com.
Organizers say this year’s Downtown Block Party will be bigger, better
TERRE HAUTE —
Pavement pounding party people plan to pounce on the ’Bash this weekend.
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