A huge crowd is expected in downtown Statesboro on Friday for the "Live, Work, Shop and Play" celebration. The event puts the spotlight on all that downtown shops have to offer and several of its organizers came on Wednesday's "Mornings unPHILtered" show to talk about the event.
Becky Hoover, Si Waters and Lisa Lee told host Phil Boyum the unveiling of the now-finished East Main Streetscape. The Georgia Southern Chorale will sing at 5:45 p.m., and a ribbon cutting will follow at 6 pm. Several dignitaries will be present, including Congressman John Barrow, State Rep.-elect Jan Tankersley, State Sen. Jack Hill and retiring State Rep. Bob Lane.
After the ribbon cutting, there will be a reception inside City Hall, where visitors can watch a new video of citizens remembering the old days of downtown and looking forward to the future of the new downtown.
In addition, there will be tours offered of the new Georgia Southern Downtown Campus building located next door. The facility will have a welcome center for the university and house an "Entrepreneurial Center" sponsored by GSU's College of Business Administration.
Waters recalled the hubbub at Statesboro's huge tobacco markets, which have now been replaced by the Farmers Market and the Averitt Art Center.
Waters also spoke about Ike Minkovitz' store downtown, which was the place to come to get your needed items.
Lee, who owns Doodlebugs, said she has been in business now for eight years downtown. Hoover, who owns Party Impressions, has been in business now for 12 years, said that the "revitalization has made it so much more pleasant for the owners as well as their customers."
Waters said he is looking forward to the project moving over to his side - West Main Street. He said many people like living downtown, and that the loft apartments upstairs of the businesses have proven to be popular in attracting residents downtown.
There also will be two stages with live music, the GSU Chorale at 6 p.m., School of Rock at 6:30 and the Light Weight Gospel singers at 7:30 on the East Main Stage. Over on the West Main Stage will be the Scooby Dieu band at 6:30 p.m. and the Will and Matt Band at 7:15 p.m.
Boyum then welcomed Nathan Deal, the Republican candidate for governor, to the program. Deal announced he will be in Statesboro for two events Thursday morning.
He will first speak to the Downtown Rotary Club's regular meeting at RJ's Steakery from 7:15 a.m. until around 7:45 a.m. Then he will head over to Snooky's just before 8 a.m. to meet and greet folks until 8:30 a.m. or so.
Boyum suggested that anyone interested in meeting with the Congressman could either get one of their Rotary Club friends to bring them along, or stop by Snooky's, grab a table, enjoy and wait for him to come by.
Boyum asked Deal about coming to the Oct. 9 "Stump" event being held in Statesboro. Deal said that Oct. 9 is his high school's 50th reunion (in Sandersville), so he would not be able to attend.
"Mornings unPHILtered" airs live Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on statesboroherald.com and also simulcast on WWNS-AM 1240 on the radio. You also can listen anytime at BoroLive.com on statesboroherald.com.