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CRA businesses band together to offer ‘stimulus’ weekend

By Staff | Aug 1, 2009

Businesses on the edge of the Community Redevelopment Agency’s district want people to know they’re still alive, and they’re throwing a sidewalk sale next weekend to make certain the point gets across.
Called, in part, a “stimulus package”, the merchants hope to offer two days of great deals along with food and fun.
Cape Coral Art and Frame owner Connie Fretwell said she asked the folks at the CRA to help her and the other businesses promote the sale.
“They always try to include us but it’s harder to get people down this way,” she said. “So we decided to get together and construct a fun day so people will come in and see where we are.”
Without the benefit of bars or restaurants near these particular businesses — on Southeast 46th Lane between Del Prado Boulevard and Southeast 15th Avenue — Fretwell said people aren’t often attracted to the area as specific shopping district.
She said the CRA has tried to include them in events like the Mother’s Day Flower Walk, but their profile still remains relatively low.
“We’re on the very end, off the beaten path, and it makes it more difficult to include us,” she added. “We’ve done a lot of the CRA things, but the people just don’t come up here because they don’t think there’s anything else here.”
The event begins at 9 a.m, on both days. Coffee and donuts will be available at Touch of Vegas Adult Arcade, and from there patrons are welcome to explore the various shops and promotions.
Most retailers will be reducing their inventory, offering deals and seminars. There also will be food for sale, the proceeds of which will go to benefit the Cape Coral Community Foundation.
Like most of the small business owners in the Cape, if not the country, Fretwell is just trying to hold on until the economy turns around.
“Summers are hard for everyone anyway. But, I have to say, if it wasn’t for the people in the Cape we would have gone under,” Fretwell added. “They keep coming back and it’s been terrific.”
The event is free and open to the public. Some of the other businesses included in the sidewalk sale are: Coast Guard Auxiliary, SeaTow, Anchor Saver, Mobil Canvas, Sunsports, Shrimp Alliance Pirate Girl, Cape Tool & Tackle, Captain George Fishing Charters and Smith Marine.
For more information call Fretwell at 549-1688.