A Mural, Trails, Openings

by Russell Swanson, Exec. Dir., VDID, Main Street Vineland

Main Street Vineland has some exciting events coming up, in addition to those I’ve mentioned each week in this column. You’ll be reading more about them in future weeks, but I’m giving you a sneak peek now.

• First off, we’re going to have the formal dedication ceremony, on Wednesday, August 11, at 12 p.m., for the food-related mural—the latest addition to our Urban Canvases on The Ave mural project. The mural, which covers the 1,800-square-foot side of the building at 636 E. Landis Avenue, is by celebrated artist Erin DiPalma. It pays tribute to Vineland’s rich agriculture heritage, as well as downtown Vineland’s abundance of restaurants offering a variety of multicultural cuisines. Erin has been working tirelessly on the mural for the past few months and it’s been a thrill and a pleasure to watch this work of art take shape. Come out, see for yourself, and show your support to this project that further beautifies The Ave.

• In September, we’re going to formally inaugurate our Walk The Ave initiative with the dedication of walking trails downtown. You may have seen the signage already up and we’re going to officially kick off the initiative. The trails will consist of (1) a one-mile loop going up Sixth Street to Elmer Street to East Avenue to Wood Street, with the ability to get on anywhere in the loop and end up where you started; (2) a two-mile loop going up and down Landis Avenue from East to West Avenue, and (3) a three-mile loop that is a combination of the one- and two-mile loops. Signs and maps will steer the walkers/runners along the loops.

• Also, watch out for another series of ribbon-cuttings, as we welcome more new businesses to The Ave.

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A reminder about Christmas in July on The Ave, coming up this Saturday, July 24, rain or shine, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. This will be the prelude to a weekend-long event—An Olde Fashioned Christmas on The Ave, to take place downtown December 3 through 5. The holiday music, food, and other Yuletide festivities we’ll have for you in July will kick off the buildup to the December event.

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Don’t forget about the call-out for prospective entertainers for our third Food Truck Festival on The Ave, coming up on Sunday, August 22, rain or shine, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., at Landis Avenue and the Boulevard. We’re planning for opening-to-closing entertainment as part of the wall-to-wall fun. In fact, DJ Zach Reed is already on board as the entertainment host. If you’ve got the talent we’re looking for, or know someone who has, we want to hear from you now. Contact Main Street Vineland Associate Director Robert Scarpa at rscarpa@vinelandcity.org. If you can also send an audio or video clip—YouTube or some other platform—that would be even better. There’ll also be plenty of food trucks, so nobody will leave hungry. Members 1st of NJ Federal Credit Union will be the major sponsor of the event and Newfield National Bank will be the Entertainment Sponsor.

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On the Ave