Downtown Saturdays seek shopping during construction

Published 11:18 am Thursday, June 20, 2013

To encourage people to support downtown businesses this summer during the Broadway reconstruction, a handful of area businesses are collaborating to serve free hot dogs and water to shoppers.

Randy Kehr

Randy Kehr

Organized by the Albert Lea-Freeborn County Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Saturdays will begin this Saturday and will continue each Saturday through Aug. 24, except for July 6.

The hot dogs and water, donated by Hy-Vee and Nelson’s Market Place, will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., or until the product is gone. The grill is being provided by Walmart.

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“We want to remind people that downtown is still open for business,” said Chamber Executive Director Randy Kehr.

This week, chamber staff will be near the Albert Lea Farmers Market. Locations will vary each week depending on the construction schedule.

Crews are working on the north end of Broadway, from Fountain Street to Clark Street, along with a portion of Fountain Street.

In the coming weeks, the construction will move south down Broadway, affecting access to more downtown businesses.

The reconstruction includes the replacement of the street, sidewalk and underground utilities on Broadway through Main Street. Decorative lighting, crosswalks, kiosks, trees and tree grates will be added, along with basic pedestrian plazas at William and Water streets.

Fountain Lake Park at the north end of Broadway will also undergo a reconstruction with the addition of a grand staircase leading from Fountain Street to a sidewalk promenade in the park, a handicapped accessible sidewalk and a new boat dock on the lake.

Kehr thanked the businesses who have come forward to help the cause.

Find out where the chamber staff will be each week by checking the chamber’s Facebook page on Fridays or by calling the chamber office at 373-3938.

The event may be canceled without notice because of inclement weather.