This semester, the game room has been celebrating First Fridays, the Make it Meadville committee’s monthly event in which stores stay open for longer hours, allowing people to shop and dine downtown in the evenings.
“I feel like there is more interest and awareness of downtown issues,” said Ryan Cole, ’10, a Davies Community Service Leader at the Redevelopment Authority of Meadville who is involved in the Make it Meadville effort.
According to Cole, the game room’s second First Friday event was “completely packed.” The most recent event collected 37 receipts from downtown businesses totaling $206.60, an increase over the first month’s total of $182.37 from 27 receipts.
“People were staying later and seemed to know more about the event,” Cole said.
This game room partnered with Grounds for Change, which stayed open that day until 2 a.m. Grounds for Change had a very busy evening, making over 150 milkshakes. GFC thought it went very well.
“We are going to be open for every First Friday,” said GFC Executive Board President Pete Budzowski, ’10. “We decided it was a pretty good idea.”
In addition, WARC got in on the act, inviting people to pick out songs to play and burn music from their collection onto their computers. Around 25 people came, including some who said they would be interested in being a DJ next year. It was a “huge success,” according to WARC General Manager Rebecca Schneider, ’10.
“We hope to make it a First Friday tradition” she said.
The Office of Student Activities is even talking to ASG to coordinate a “Campus Center wide First Friday,” said Tricha Gregor, office manager for the Office of Student Involvement.
“As the weather gets nicer, we hope more students will come down for First Fridays,” Cole said.
The overwhelming majority of the receipts turned in were from Creative Crust, according to OSI’s records, but Julian’s, Gringos, and the Artist’s Cup Café also did well.
For those interested in supporting their local economy and getting in on the fun and games from the school, students can try visiting @ The Bank or the Artist’s Cup Café. @ The Bank is a group of local artists and shop owners, selling a variety of goods including art, music supplies, dresses, cheap used books and delightful drinks and sandwiches from the Tellers Row café. They are all quite friendly and it is well worth a look around.
The Artist’s Cup Café is also a great place to hang out and enjoy some coffee and a delicious piece of pie. Be sure to catch Open Mic Night on Saturdays from 7 to10 p.m. for great music and a lively atmosphere.
Look out for the next First Friday on April 2 when there will be more fun and games downtown and in the game room.
“We are doing an Art Walk, to focus on some of the art places downtown,” Cole said. “There is Meadville Council on the Arts, Meadville Fine Art Prints, @ the Bank, Sandy’s Art Works. We are hoping to highlight these places.”
So go downtown and check out new places – Make it Meadville bets you’ll be pleasantly surprised.