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Tofino to host Main Street shindig

“We thought it was it was time to celebrate again before the really busy days of summer fall upon us.”
A polka dot walkway that Kaitlyn Gregory and Leah Prier perused while visiting Tofino from Nanoose Bay over the weekend is one of several Main Street upgrades that will be celebrated at a district-hosted Tofitian block-party this week. (Photo - Andrew Bailey)

When the work ends, the party begins.

Phase two of Tofino’s Main Street Revitalization project is complete and the district is hosting a party from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, June 29 to celebrate.

Main Street will be closed to vehicle traffic between Wharf Street and Second Street from 2-9 p.m. to make room for the festivities as well as the event’s set up and take down.

The party will include live music, craft and food vendors, children’s activities and displays promoting local initiatives, like the expanded Tofino Free Shuttle program, which will launch the following day, and the Tofino Museum, according to a report from Tofino’s manager of RMI services April Froment.

The district hosted a similar event in 2013 after the completion of the Fourth Street and Campbell Street improvements.

“We had a very successful block party after the first upgrades to Campbell Street, and everyone seemed to love the notion of shutting down the street to cars and letting us walk all over it,” Tofino mayor Josie Osborne told the Westerly news in an email. “We thought it was it was time to celebrate again before the really busy days of summer fall upon us.”

She said the recently completed Main Street enhancements brought two key benefits to locals.

“First is the huge increase in safety for drivers and pedestrians by reorienting parking and creating a much more substantial pedestrian walkway,” she said. “Second is the incorporation of arts, culture and heritage throughout the upgrades that help remind of us of the village’s roots and how important industries like fishing and logging have been in the community’s development.”

She added the upgrades would help tourists find local shops and get a clearer picture of the town’s history.

“These enhancements also benefit local businesses by increasing foot traffic as well as an overall increase in the number of parking spots along Main Street,” she said. “We’re fortunate to have access to grants like the Resort Municipality Initiative and the Island Coastal Economic Trust to undertake these upgrades—they demonstrate to everyone that we’re proud of our downtown core and its businesses, and that we celebrate the community’s arts, culture and heritage.”

”The revitilization project’s budget was $533,00 and included the development of pedestrian walkways, redistributed parking, improved public spaces and landscaping, according to Froment.

Andrew Bailey

About the Author: Andrew Bailey

I arrived at the Westerly News as a reporter and photographer in January 2012.
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