Festival Brings Mixed Reactions

7 years 2 months 1 week ago Wednesday, October 06 2010 Oct 6, 2010 Wednesday, October 06, 2010 2:22:18 PM CDT October 06, 2010 in News
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COLUMBIA - The weekend Roots n' Blues n' Barbecue festivities are over, but some local businesses are still feeling the effects of the large crowd.

Whether good or bad, many downtown businesses were affected by the Roots 'n Blues 'n Barbecue Festival.

"We had a line from the counter to the front door," Kaldi's barista Nora Brady said, "We ran out of everything".

Right across the street, however, one business was struggling to get people in the door.

"We had an all day happy hour, literally all day. On a Saturday night we still couldn't get our normal Saturday night crowd," the Rome's co-owner Cory Hodapp said.

On the corner of Eighth and Elm, merely one block over, business was booming.

"Our location was perfect for it," Tin Can worker Eric Abney said.

Aside from the fluctuations in business, the event went smoothly. Columbia Police Officer Jill Wieneke said that only two arrests were made this weekend. Wieneke also stated that 40 officers worked over the course of the festival. Despite this, some business owners would like to see the event moved to a different location.

"I would say take it to the fairgrounds," Hodapp explained, "It's a great festival. We all like good music. We all like good food, but to put it in the center of downtown in the middle of businesses and restaurants that are going to suffer from it, it's probably not the best location."

"It was just the music, it's the barbecue, the vending booths. It's what the weekend is all about, and it kind of excludes us," Hodapp said.

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