News From Terre Haute, Indiana

August 23, 2013

EDITORIAL: Block Party event gives city chance to celebrate

The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Summer will soon begin winding down, but there’s plenty of time for downtown Terre Haute to get wound up.

The wildly successful Downtown Terre Haute Block Party will fuel community activity on Saturday. In its third consecutive year, the daylong festival will offer an ever-expanding schedule of events and give residents and visitors a chance to reconnect with the heart and soul of the city.

Wabash Avenue and adjoining streets will come alive at midday Saturday as businesses, artisans, musicians and nonprofit organizations set up for a grand afternoon, evening and night of activity and community fun. All they need to make it happen is for people to seize the moment and head downtown to enjoy the festivities.

Among new features this year is the eye-popping addition of a zip line at Fifth and Wabash. Sponsored by UAP Clinic, it’s three stories high and 100 feet long.

The Downtown Block Party was born from a vision by a small group of community and business leaders who wanted to further the gathering momentum of recent years and reinvigorate the concept of a summertime event to bring people back into the city’s historical center.

It has certainly served its purpose. The event has infused downtown with a magnificent dose of community spirit.

The Block Party will take place from 1 p.m. to midnight on Wabash Avenue between Fourth and Ninth streets. Live bands will play music in several locations throughout the day and night. Local foods will be featured. In addition to an artisan marketplace, there will be a children’s zone and cornhole tournament.

This year’s festival is sponsored by Union Hospital and presented by Downtown Terre Haute Inc. There is a whole host of co-sponsors. All have made a significant contribution to ensure this year’s event is as spectacular as the first two.

The Block Party is an exceptional way to celebrate Terre Haute’s business, social and cultural renaissance of recent years. There was a time when few believed this type of rebirth could even happen. But it has. This special festival shines a bright and colorful light on the city’s past and dreams for the future.

There are good reasons to celebrate. The Downtown Block Party is the place to do it.