TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV)– Connie Wrin opened the Verve more than two decades ago. She said she never imagined having to find ways to keep her business alive during a pandemic.
“I’m not going to be surprised by anything any more. But who knew? Here we are,” she explained. “We all survived this. We’ve even had three new businesses on this block in 2020 which is shocking.”
Wrin and other business owners like George Azar at Saratoga said last year’s Eat in the Streets event helped keep their businesses running while keeping customers staying safe.
“In our case, it really was a lifeline to get us through the rest of the year,” Azar began. “I’m sure that it helped the other businesses. Not only downtown but other businesses in general. We’re hoping that the community will support it again this year.”
After seeing the success of the first Eat in the Streets, Wrin said they knew they needed to bring it back.
“People loved it. I’ve had people this year asking before we made it public that we were going to do it, asking if we were going to do it again because they really enjoyed it,” she said. “Quite honestly, I think people–whether we’re in a pandemic or not–like the whole idea of eating outside.”
Restaurants from 7th Street to 5th Street along Wabash Avenue will allow outdoor dining for customers from 6 a.m. Friday until 11 p.m. Saturday. Live music is also planned.
Azar said he’s looking forward to seeing more people come out and enjoy the downtown area.
“Hopefully this will encourage people to come downtown to enjoy a beverage and a sandwich, enjoy the music, enjoy the weather and feel like it’s old times again,” he said.
Eat in the Streets will continue through May 24.