First Friday

A shot of a pumpkin, focused on its stem.

A shot of a pumpkin, focused on its stem. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fall was definitely in the air this past Friday night as the city of Florence held its monthly First Friday celebration.

Downtown Florence was bustling with activity on Friday night as the town celebrated its month First Friday. The streets were filled with artists, vendors, and entertainment while restaurants and shops offered deals to attract event goers. This month’s theme was inspired by fall. Pumpkins were scattered about shop entrances, and there was a pumpkin carving contest.

Before the event took place, the city of Florence offered fun pumpkin facts on the Facebook page for First Fridays.

“The vendors, as always, keep people entertained,” said Katie Gambles, a local resident. “The weather was perfect. You couldn’t have asked for a more perfect day to hold a First Friday on.”

“I enjoyed walking around downtown, getting to look at all the cool stuff that people had to offer,” Gambles said.

People had the opportunity to set up a table and sell their items such as art or handmade crafts. A variety of unique items were offered at First Friday. Artists had a chance to display paintings, while others sold handmade purses, knickknacks, and other crafts.

“I enjoyed walking around and looking at what people had made to sell,” said Jake McCormack, a student at UNA. “I like to buy stuff that is handmade rather than made in a store because I believe handmade stuff is created with love.”

McCormack also pointed out how all the businesses of Downtown Florence come together to welcome the public to downtown.

“I love the sense of community I get when I attend a First Friday event,” said McCormack. “This month’s celebration was just as fun as the past ones.”

McCormack said kids enjoyed First Friday as well.

“There was a face painting booth set up for kids,” McCormack said. “There is no way that they could not love that.”

Restaurants and shops of downtown were open for business. Some even offered deals to entice visitors.

“My clientele doubled this past Friday night,” said Brian Mann, a server at FloBama in Downtown Florence. “People were coming in to get a drink or food after walking around the street. I was happy with the money I made that night.”

“The band offered people a chance to come in and relax, maybe drink a beer,” Mann said. “Businesses of downtown had to of been happy with the turn out because I sure was!”