News in brief: January edition

Two weeks in and 2017 is already looking exciting for downtown Alpena. Here’s a round up of the latest news:

1. A craft beer festival is being scheduled for this fall. Organized by Eric Peterson of The Fresh Palate, the festival will take place on a closed of section of 2nd Avenue and feature Michigan beers, food, and live music. For the full story, click here.

Some of the beers recently on tap at the Fresh Palate. Photo by the Fresh Palate.

2. The Second Avenue bridge is undergoing construction. The bridge will be closed to all vehicle and pedestrian traffic through the end of January- so plan accordingly. WBKB covers the story here. 

3. Thunder Bay Theatre has hired a full-time Managing DirectorAlpena native Molly Stricker returns to TBT this May to handle the business side of things, including grant-writing, fundraising, and managing day-to-day operations.

Molly Stricker & Artistic Director Jeff Mindock. Photo by Thunder Bay Theatre.

4. AMC has purchased Carmike Cinemas. What does this mean for Alpena? Currently, both the Royal Knight & the State Theater are owned by Carmike- so stay tuned for what this new ownership may have in store for our theaters.

Photo of the State Theatre last winter. Photo by Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary.

5. Cathy’s Hallmark is closing. With all merchandise at 50% off, stock up on cards, stationary, and gifts, and say goodbye to this beloved staple of Chisholm Street.  No word yet on the storefront’s future.

6. Soaps and Such is moving locations. Currently located near the State Theater, Soaps and Such is busy remodeling its new location on Chisholm Street next to Thunder Bay Arts Council & Gallery with plans to open its new location in February.

7. 45th Parallel Glass Works is opening a downtown gallery. Located next to Steven’s Menswear on 2nd Avenue, they’re currently renovating the building & planning on opening their gallery, which will feature local, handmade glassworks, this spring.

Photo by August Matuzak & Downtown Alpena.

8. The city is moving forward with changing downtown 2nd Ave to two-way traffic.  Construction is set for early fall 2017. Still on the discussion table is snow removal, as well as interest in one of downtown’s most beloved historic buildings. 

9. Alpena’s historic Winter Carnival is being revived. Come celebrate all things winter at Ice Fest 2017, happening February 3-4th at Northern Lights Arena. Frosty festivities include a snow sculpture contest, snow shoeing, skiing, sled dogs, fat tire biking, skating, raffles, and prizes. Oh, and an Austin Brothers’ beer tent. For the Facebook event & more details, click here. 

Have the skills to do this? Come to Ice Fest 2017.

And speaking of ice…

10. Blue ice has returned to the Alpena Boat Harbor. Make sure to stop by to experience its beauty in person! And while you’re at it, take a stroll through downtown, warm up with a cup of joe (or mulled wine), browse some shops & galleries, and stay a while.

Photo captured by Michael Blewett.

NOTE: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that 2nd Avenue was remaining one-way traffic. In fact, the City IS planning on changing it to two-way traffic beginning this fall. 

Any news I missed? Comment below or message the blog on Facebook

Reporting live from in front of the fireplace downtown Alpena, this is Anne Gentry for Blog Downtown Alpena. Spread the love & share this post to make sure everyone’s in the loop about all things downtown. 

2 thoughts on “News in brief: January edition

  1. A MUST SEE winter display. There is a beautiful Scene of Villages in the old Kresge store windows. It is all lite up with lights from one end to the other going around the corner in the windows also, across from the farmers market parking lot. An extremely large number of hours were put into this beautiful Scene of Villages depicting individual sights of the winter season!!


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