May 4, 2018 10:30:35 AM
The first Saturday in May is always the busiest day of the year in downtown Columbus. That will be no exception this year, as the 23rd annual Market Street Festival brings hundreds of vendors and thousands of visitors to our downtown.
The celebration actually begins tonight, with a concert at the Columbus Riverwalk, with the MS Lions All State Band at 6 p.m. followed by A1A, the official and original Jimmy Buffet Tribute Show at 8 p.m.
The festival hits full stride Saturday morning, beginning with the annual 5K run at 8, a prelude to more than nine hours of activity that blanket the entire downtown area.
As in the past, there will be live music, an antique car show, a kids play area and vendors - lots and lots of vendors.
This year, there are 225 crafts vendors and 34 food vendors plying their various wares, selling just about everything you can imagine and - let's face it - some stuff you couldn't imagine.
Two new features will be offered - a second children's area off Main Street where the Gilmer Inn used to be and a Voice of Market Street talent show. The activity area includes different games and entertainments for kids at varying costs, some of which are free.
Market Street continues to offer an ever-expanding variety of fun, entertainment and shopping, but perhaps the most important aspect of the event is that it brings our community together in a way that few events do.
Civic organizations use the event to raise funds for their charitable projects, so this event is not strictly a commercial enterprise.
Those familiar with Market Street often note the atmosphere that always seems to accompany the event. It has proven to consistently be a fun, safe and wholesome event, something everyone can enjoy.
It's a big day, all right. It would be a shame to miss out on the fun.
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