ArticleID: 116
Date: 1/1/2002
Written By: Captain Jackson

by Captain Jackson

Those who traveled to Downtown Jackson for the annual EVE ON THE AVE celebration noticed it just didn`t seem like it has in years past. And the crowd was smaller this year. True, it was cold. But it was cold last year as well. It was as though the same atmosphere just wasn`t present.

Solemn as the mood was, the event was still very much a success, thanks to the many sponsors, and the Downtown Development Authority. And even though Michigan Ave wasn`t as packed with people as we`ve seen at many of the downtown events, estimates indicate two thousand plus people cruised the streets during the three hours between nine and midnight.

For the police on patrol, both regular officers and reserve, it was almost like a day off. I talked to a number during the evening and all shared basically the same opinion of the crowd as "very quiet and well behaved."

"People just seem afraid to gather like they used to before 9-11," one local bar owner said, "Our place isn`t suffering though." It wasn`t, as all the local restaurants seemed just about filled to capacity.

The Michigan Theatre, who opened their doors as a warming spot, had the Detroit band G.R.R. (Great Rock N` Roll) performing free gratis throughout the evening. People came and listened to the music while theater manager George Davis spent most of his time with a mop in hand to make certain no one slipped on the slush covered floors. Even a woman who began dancing on stage with the band apologized and returned to a seat without having to be asked to leave.

The ice sculptures in Bucky Harris Park had a steady stream of people lined up to take their turns closely examining the beautiful work. One even depicted the current City of Jackson logo.

Of course, the midnight ball drop and fireworks display drew the largest crowd to the streets. And afterwards, the Fitness Council had their 5K run around the streets of the downtown area.

Many may mock our community, but for a city of 36,000 we can certainly provide a great deal of free family oriented entertainment on a similar scale to any city much larger than ours!

Happy New Year Jackson!

Copyright 2002, CFC

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