Osborne Village Biz said it has decided to scrap its Canada Day street festival this year, saying it is time for a new approach because members were no longer benefiting from the event.
“Outside food trucks and vendors were monopolizing the street and many Village businesses decided to close on Canada Day,” said Lindsay Somers, Biz executive director, in an interview with Global News.
The Biz surveyed its members last fall and found prioritizing new initiatives and energy is needed to create a new sense of community vibrancy and pride in the neighbourhood.
The plan going forward is to move to a new summer-long model the Biz is calling Happy Fridays in the Village.
“We’re creating a new energy and momentum to last all summer long. The Village is an urban gem in WInnipeg. We’re polishing it up and inviting people back to fall back in love with the Village again,” Somers said.
The new model will be focused on revitalizing public spaces in Osborne Village as well as developing new partnerships. Plans include working with Cool Streets Winnipeg, The Village Idiots and architect Joe Kalturnyk to add new murals, a community pop-up patio, and a live concert series.
“We are developing walking tours to share Village stories and explore the architecture of the densest neighbourhood in the city,” Somers said.
“We are working with shopkeepers to explore a ‘shop late’ on Fridays with the possibility of sidewalk sales.”