Main Street event kicks off Friday

The Main Street Program is kicking off a statewide initiative this Friday to promote shopping along downtown Ridgway."First Friday" will be a monthly event held on the first Friday of each month. Downtown merchants, restaurants, clubs and specialty shops will hold extended hours, promotions and specials until 7 p.m. in an effort to increase traffic into each participating business.In the warmer months and as more businesses begin to participate, Main Street Manager Michelle Bogacki plans to incorporate a theme into each event like a "Girls Night Out," "Jazz in the Gazebo," or a "Culinary on the Curbside."For the "Girls Night Out" themed First Friday, Bogacki suggested offering a package that included an overnight stay, trip to a salon or spa and dinner."Several communities throughout the state have created First Fridays as a shopping opportunity and they have been successful," Bogacki said. "The initiative is not just for local residents to shop local, but is also to provide neighboring communities an opportunity to come after their working hours so they can get into our shops on an evening."Down the road, Bogacki hopes each participating merchant or venue will hold extended hours every Friday.If any downtown business or nonprofit organization would like to participate in First Friday contact Main Street Manager Michelle Bogacki at 772-9150 or at up a copy of the Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012 edition of The Ridgway Record for more.