This past Saturday, Thin Man Brewery held its one year anniversary Summer Solstice Street Festival. This annual event is just what the 500 block of Elmwood needed to help get its mojo back. The live music line-up was phenomenal, bringing stellar acts to an outdoor stage, with beer enthusiasts and music fans flooding out into the street.
Over the years, Bidwell Parkway has become the epicenter of Elmwood Avenue, for obvious reasons. The stronger that the city gets, the stronger its Olmsted Park System gets, which is why so many people and businesses rally around it. That means that other parts of Elmwood, further away from Bidwell, must get more determined and more creative with the ways that they draw new customers to their midst.
On Elmwood, between Utica and Bryant, there has been way too much apathy over the years, combined with unruly or out of touch building owners. Bright spots have come in the form of MTK (great new patio) and Thin Man (incredible build out and street festival). There are finally a couple of devoted business owners that are willing to get creative, to invest, and to rally people to this long underperforming stretch of Elmwood.
By no means does a successful street festival mean that the 500 block of Elmwood is going to resurrect itself overnight, but it just goes to show what one business can do to help spread good cheer, while attempting to light a fire under the butts of others who have sat back and watched for far too long.
Lead image and slide show photography by Nico