Stay late and shop downtown Pickens

Joe Toppe Staff Writer

December 18, 2013

PICKENS – Visitors to downtown Pickens interested in sticking around a little later will be able to do just that on Friday, Dec. 20.

“On the third Friday of every month, downtown Pickens comes alive at the typical closing time as shops and restaurants stay open late and offer special promotions,” said Allison Fowler, executive director of Pickens Revitalization Association. “People can leisurely stroll from shop to shop, taking in the holiday lights and decorations. They can also grab a bite to eat along the way, mingling with friends, and meeting new ones, as musicians perform nearby.”

Fowler encourages visitors to downtown Pickens to stop by after hours.

“As a downtown that is home to a County Courthouse, a large number of our downtown storefronts are law offices,” Fowler said. “As such, Pickens is full of people during the day while court is in session, but downtown clears out by 5 p.m. In an effort to encourage community vibrancy in Pickens apart from the daytime hours, and to bring to light our many unique merchants and restaurants, we want to draw people downtown beyond the typical 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. business hours.”

According to Fowler, the PRA was designed to initiate community enhancement projects like Third Fridays.

“The Pickens Revitalization Association was formed as a unique preservation-based economic development tool that enables the community to focus on business and community development through programs such as third Fridays,” Fowler said. “PRA sponsors the monthly celebration to create a lively community atmosphere and promote local businesses in downtown Pickens. Third Fridays is the perfect chance to become acquainted with the historic downtown of Pickens in one lovely evening.”

City Administrator, Katherine Hendricks, said the city is committed to their partnership with the PRA.

“We are committed to partnering with the PRA and the Pickens Business Community to do anything we can to promote a strong and viable downtown,” she said. “Third Fridays is one way to get businesses what they so often tell me they need, ‘just more foot traffic and people in our stores’. I encourage everyone to support this campaign and work as a community to grow downtown Pickens while empowering the successful existing businesses we are so fortunate to have.”

According to Hendricks, similar programs have been very successful in other cities.

“This campaign has been highly successful in other cities and its goal is simple, give people another reason to get downtown and shop local,” Hendricks said.