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Nights on the Parkway: Street fest Friday in the South Cape

By Staff | Nov 17, 2011

“Nights on the Parkway” returns Friday for another go-round of shopping, dining and entertainment along one of the city’s most traveled thoroughfares.

It’s an effort by downtown business owners to showcase themselves in a festival-like atmosphere.

Live music, classic cars, karaoke, raffle prizes and a treasure hunt are just some of the fun to be had when the sun starts to set on Friday night. Cape Coral’s favorite son, Big john, is even set to make his return.

“This is all about getting people out of their cars and putting feet on the street,” said Carole Glorioso from John Michaels Jewelry. “We’re inviting everyone downtown to have a great time.”

Businesses throughout downtown Cape Coral, not just along the parkway, are taking part in the recurring event, which is planned for the third Friday of every month.

Glorioso said it was important to offer something new for each “Nights on the Parkway” to keep people coming back while, at the same time, generating new interest in the Cape’s downtown.

“It was above and beyond what we thought it would be,” Glorioso said of the inaugural event.

Helen Ramey, Economic Development director for the Community Redevelopment Agency, said the event truly offers something for everyone and puts “bodies” in the CRA businesses.

Dee Frank, owner of Artist’s Dreams Gallery, said the first Nights on the Parkway pulled people into the gallery who had never been there before.

The gallery has been hosting an artist reception on the third Friday of each month, so the “Nights” event is a natural extension of that successful showcase.

“We had three times the amount of people we would normally have in the gallery,” Frank said of the last Nights on the Parkway. “It’s a great night to get out and experience all the local businesses, see some entertainment and have a good time.”

Lou Simmons, CRA Board members and owner of the Cape Dog Bakery, said it was inspiring to see the business community band together while thinking outside of the box on how to promote themselves.

“This was a grassroots type of event where people are finally taking charge of their own destiny,” Simmons said. “It’s almost contagious.”

Simmons added, “It was like a party atmosphere.”

Big John is set to return to his rightful place during a special ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov 18.

Nights on the Parkway will kick off right after the big guy is welcomed home, running from 6 – 9 p.m.

For more information contact Carole Glorioso at 850-7021.