I've been in Kokomo all my life but have only been regularly hanging out in downtown since fall of 2012 when we started kicking up dust at the Main Street Cafe.
And I've noticed a palpable spirit that exists downtown that I've not heretofore noticed in other parts of the city: This is the place where people believe in, root for, hope for and aspire for a better Kokomo.
I'm not saying this doesn't exist in other parts of our city, but here it's concentrated. You can see, smell and taste it. The city does its part by making amazing displays of flowers happen and its pro-Kokomo staffers and officials are foot-traveled ambassadors. And it cannot be overlooked that there are forward-thinking, forward-moving elected people making a difference.
Having begun a new business, it's as if we instantly gained a cheer block of fellow business people, downtown associations, residents and downtown workers, not to mention those people who trek down just to dine with us. People are happy for us, appreciate us and tell their friends about us. We know this because these great people tell us these things often. In a town where people can often seem tight-lipped or modest, communication flows in a uniquely positive way downtown.
I feel as if there are two Kokomo's: and the one downtown is everything I want greater Kokomo to be: alive, excited, optimistic, pursuing growth, art-appreciative, relationally savvy and communal.
I love hanging out downtown whenever I get the chance, because something palpably positive is afoot, and somehow Sandra an I get to be are a part of it. When was the last time you hung out downtown?