Monday, May 1, 2017

Please move the Dogwood Carnival

THERE ARE A handful of events in Quincy which shut down the streets and impact Second String Music at Fifth and Maine. We are fine with it. We are proud to be on the square and it's all part of being downtown.

However, this weekend's event really drives us crazy and I'd like to see it moved. The Dogwood Festival is a Quincy tradition and we love most of it, like the parade and other events. But the carnival down here kills us every year, and we might even close our doors Saturday and write it off.

Yup. The Heart Flip shuts the street down ....
There is a huge difference between Dogwood and the other events. Gus Macker pretty much shuts us down every Memorial Day weekend, but we love Gus and the Quincy Exchange Club. The new QFest is the first weekend of June and we'll see what closing the streets does to us, but the event itself tends to draw a more arts and music-loving crowd, so we will stay open. The last couple of years we even opened on Sunday and didn't do much business, and it was fine.

Tin Dusters is a bad weekend for us. You'd think these folks would be interested in our store and what we sell, but the past couple of Tin Duster weekends have not been good. There's another long backstory to it and it's not worth rehashing, but let's just say we aren't huge fans. But it's a good event for Quincy and does bring a lot of money here, and other businesses do well.

There are other parades and events which shut down the street. So be it. They are about Quincy and so are we.

Here's the huge difference between all these events and the Dogwood carnival, and it's local, local, local. The Dogwood carnival is, to the best of my knowledge, the only event that comes from out of town and doesn't have any lasting economic impact here. If I am wrong, I apologize.

Nobody knows anything about the group that comes in there for the carnival. The Chamber of Commerce organizes the Dogwood parade and does PR, but they are very quick to distance themselves from the carnival itself. Nobody at City Hall seems to know who this group is, either. I finally did get a local contact and left her a message yesterday. She called this morning and left a message, said she was going to be too busy today to talk, and referred me to somebody else on the committee.

We are not the only business not happy with Fifth and Maine being shut down. To be fair, there are others in favor of the carnival and that do well. And I want to stress we love Dogwood and everything about it, and we applaud the Chamber for all the hard work it does.

Would it torpedo the carnival if we moved it?  I don't think so. There are plenty of places to put it within a six-block area downtown, and keep Maine Street open.

I'm out of town this weekend. It's up to Sheryl if she wants to keep the store open Saturday, or do what she did last fall during Tin Dusters, and take most of Saturday off.

And, as always, we are proud to be at Fifth and Maine.

No comments:

Post a Comment