Love where you live!
LA MESA -- The first Friday of every month -- which includes this Friday -- is become a sort of moveable feast in downtown La Mesa.
And this new development has nothing to do with the Property Based Improvement District, the Village Merchants Association, the Chamber of Commerce or the City of La Mesa.
In fact, this new development is a viral effort started simply by Cynthia Stein, owner of Galleria, and Shannon O'Dunn, of O'Dunn Fine Arts.
The two merchants thought it would be a good idea if retail merchants along La Mesa Boulevard would stay open late and maybe attract the growing number of diners coming downtown to enjoy dinner or drinks at local bistros. Many of the merchants offer snacks, sweets or special deals for the evening shoppers.
"Other areas have specials at the end of the month,'' Stein said Thursday. "We're doing it at the start of the month.''
Stein and O'Dunn have supplied yellow balloons to denote the open stores (see photo above) and so far so good. With little fanfare, last month's First Friday found many couples taking the opportunity to stroll the streets.
"I had several sales after 6 o'clock,'' Stein said. So far nearly 30 merchants have stayed open late, including several on the side streets off La Mesa Boulevard.
Stein said she hopes to keep the event going at least through the end of the year.
"We can show that this city's downtown doesn't roll up the sidewalks at 5 o'clock,'' Stein said.
O'Dunn said Friday she is hoping this will catch on and become a permanent part of enlivening the village evenings once a month.