OUR VIEW: Outdoor space is working near Corn Palace
We’re seeing a good trend taking place on Mitchell’s Main Street.
More and new events are taking place in the area in front of and around the Corn Palace, which is starting to find its stride as an outdoor hub for community activities, as well.
Over the last few years, the First Friday events during the summer months have brought a mix of music, games and food to the area. Still in its infancy, the Food Truck Friday event has potential, after the first version last week.
The Palace City Pre-Sturgis Party was a big success last year, and it is also in the works to occur on Aug. 1 with a car show, food vendors, bike tricks, and of course, space to welcome visiting motorcyclists.
Edgewood Senior Living’s Longest Day fundraiser for Alzheimer’s Disease is scheduled for June 21, moving to the Corn Palace area this year.
The start and finish of the Palace City Half Marathon in October was also held in front of the Corn Palace. The new Corn Palace Plaza has also been used for outdoor exercise, and it’s the location of the Farmers Market, a summer staple that will get underway on June 6.
There’s also the natural occasions of spillout from events inside the Corn Palace, such as the gathering for family and friends after the recent graduation ceremonies at the facility. And there’s likely more ideas out there that either are in the works or need the right spark. Because of investments in the downtown area in recent years, it’s an area where people want to be, where they want to hang out and spend free time.
In addition, there’s events we take for granted. The Corn Palace is, of course, a huge landmark in every Mitchell parade, and the area is also full for a week during the annual Corn Palace Festival.
When locals are willing to spend time around the Corn Palace, visitors see that, too. It gives the community a great chance to retain visitors for a longer period when there are activities taking place around the Corn Palace. The temporary street closures are a worthwhile tradeoff for more activity taking place downtown.
The Corn Palace is not all that our city is. But it is at the center of our city, both physically and culturally, and to have it host additional events nearby throughout the rest of the year is great.
Let’s keep it up.