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The Journal Gazette

  • Chad Ryan | The Journal Gazette Guests line up outside to go inside the Phoenix during the Broadway Stroll, an event to increase awareness of the businesses on Broadway.

Monday, July 04, 2016 10:22 pm

Broadway Stroll crowd thrills merchants

Frank Gray | The Journal Gazette

The sidewalks on Broadway, which are mostly vacant on Sundays, were packed with hundreds of people, just seeing for themselves what shops and activities can be found there.

The Broadway Stroll was organized by Mandie Kolkman of the Philmore on Broadway, to bring attention to the businesses there. Numerous businesses, besides opening Sunday, featured bands and vendors.

Kolkman pointed out that most of the buildings along Broadway were built in the 1920s and earlier, many are art deco in design, and they are home to new and happening businesses that some of public might not know about.

At Fancy and Staple at 1111 Broadway, owner Taber Olinger said the store isn’t normally open Sundays. Around 1 p.m., though, when the stroll started, the store was crowded with customers and it continued that way much of the afternoon.

Across the street, customers wandered in and out of Terry Ratliff’s studio, which isn’t normally open to the public except for shows. Ratliff said at first he didn’t think the Fourth of July weekend was a good time for the stroll. Too many people would be out of town, but he was surprised by the turnout.

At Trubble Brewing, a craft brewery and eatery at 2725 Broadway, crowds stayed past the 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. brunch. Owner Keli Hankee said she hoped the stroll would get people out walking around and seeing what Broadway has to offer.

Jewelry maker Ron Ost­lund, who had a display in Ratliff’s gallery, said the Broadway area is small enough that people can walk to the different businesses.

"Now maybe people will stop and visit the businesses," Kolkman said.

fgray@jg.net