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May 4, 2013

Main Street kicks off Fabulous Fridays season

By Mark Boshnack Staff Writer
The Daily Star

---- — This season of Oneonta’s Fabulous Fridays got off to a good start, people at the various activities said. It was sponsored by Main Street Oneonta, a downtown promotion organization.

The series of events, which in recent years was on the first Friday of milder-weather months, is being offered on the first and third Friday from May to September.

Rachel Lutz Jessup is the MSO vice president. At about 6:30 p.m. there were about 75 people in the plaza, she said. “We had a good turnout” that will improve as more people learn of the activities. “The weather is perfect, the band is great everything is falling into place,” she said. “It’s family fun that brings the community together.”

Events Friday included performances by the Electric Thermal Funk Band and Brewery Ommegang beer tastings at Muller Plaza. There were other activities at several Main Street locations, including henna painting at Theresa’s Emporium.

“People seem to be enjoying it,” Jessica Halter said while henna painting. She grew up in Oneonta when Bresee’s Department Store and other establishments brought people to the area.

“This brings a similar feel to downtown,” she said.

Greater Oneonta History Center Executive Director Bob Brzozowski said “it’s been a good crowd” that should increase as tourists come to the area. The History Center had a cakewalk, with the winner of each competition receiving a cake or related gift certificates.

The event helps bring people to the area and “encourages those of us on Main Street to think of ways to attract people to the activities,” he said. He is also on the MSO Design Committee, which presented an artwork by Madeline Silber and a mural by Simone Mantellass in the lower level of the Main Street walkway.

One of those waiting to participate in the History Center Activity was Tammy Smith of Oneonta, who was there with her 4-year-old son, Carter Jackson. They were regulars last year, she said.

“We are here a lot,” she said. “We like to walk around (and see what is going on).”

Stuart Moss of Oneonta was at the plaza listening to the the music with his wife Lori on Friday. They said they were already at the History Center and other locations.

“It’s fantastic,” he said. “We always come down after to work to see what’s going on.”