In downtown East Greenwich these days, things are starting to look more … normal. Okay, we are all wearing face masks but people are out and about! The ghost town of March into May has been replaced by people getting coffee at The Nook, trying a donut at Knead, stopping for ice cream at Clementine’s, or getting a meal at Besos, Dante’s, Rasa, The Patio, The Revival, Fresco, La Masseria, Frank & John’s, Tavern on Main, Greenwich Oyster Bar, Fillipou’s, Tio Mateo’s, Kon … you get the idea.
Town officials and the EG Chamber of Commerce, with help from Commerce Rhode Island, are looking to boost that activity before the cold weather comes, starting this Sunday, Sept. 6, when Main Street will be closed to car traffic between 3 and 8:30 p.m. from Dedford Street to King Street (weather permitting).
“Our Main Street is a key factor to East Greenwich remaining a well-known destination in the state and region, which creates many positive ripple effects for residents and businesses throughout our town,” said Chamber Executive Director Steve Lombardi in a press release this week. “Due to COVID-19, this year we were not able to hold our annual Main Street Strolls, we have had to postpone our popular Restaurant Week and the Summer’s End concert will not be taking place. There are many great businesses throughout East Greenwich but for these reasons we believe it’s important to help out our core business district.”
Here’s how it will work:
- There will be a parking ban to be put in place at 2 p.m. Sunday on Main Street between King and Dedford streets and car traffic will be stopped starting 3 through 8:30 p.m.
- During this time, restaurants and retailers located in the designated location will be able to set up additional customers tables and move salable merchandise in the street in front of their respective establishments.
- At 8:30 p.m. all businesses in the designated location will need to begin to bring back items and guests in from the street, as normal traffic and parking will resume at 9 p.m.
The hope is this event will bring business to all of East Greenwich, Lombardi said.
“We need and want our small businesses in all parts of East Greenwich to survive and thrive,” he said.
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