CINCINNATI — Second Sunday On Main returned to Over-The-Rhine this Sunday.
OTR’s Chamber of Commerce hosts the free street festival on the second Sunday of each month from July through November. The goal is to connect new faces with local businesses on Main Street.
“It’s driving traffic on a consistent basis and reminding everyone that there's so much to discover in Over-The-Rhine,” said Kelly Adamson, executive director of OTR’s Chamber of Commerce.
The event takes place each month between Liberty Street and E. 12 Street. It’s now in its 16th year.
“Main Street has been, you know, of course, one of the original streets here that brick and mortars have existed on,” Adamson said. “But it's changed a lot over the years. So we always try to have people come here and discover like, what are the new businesses? And there's everything from vintage to fantastic bars and restaurants to non-profits.”
Thirty brick-and-mortar shops, cafes and galleries took part this weekend, as well as more than 100 other vendors from all across the city.
Business owners said events like these bring people in who might not otherwise take the time to explore neighborhoods like OTR.
“Some of the comments I've had are, ‘Wow, this is amazing, I never knew Cincinnati had neighborhoods like this,’” said Tim Fuller, owner of Tim’s Picks.
Fuller opened Tim’s Picks, a vintage shop on Main, two years ago. He’s taken part in Second Sundays ever since.
“It's a great impact financially, and also just getting the word out, because there were throngs of people looking and and exploring places maybe they've never been before,” Fuller said.
The pandemic hit Over-The-Rhine and other urban areas hard. Some businesses closed and customers dwindled.
Fuller said events like these bring back hope.
“It's euphoric, having people down in crowds and people going through their normal routine again,” he said.
Chaske Haberkos, who co-owns Brown Bear Bakery, said Second Sundays bring in a wave of new customers.
“I think it helps to showcase all the small businesses that are in the area down here,” Haberkos said. “And I think just kind of serves to be a catalyst for bringing people together.”
Adamson said the goal is to keep that business even after the event is over.
“A lot of these businesses, they're still hurting,” Adamson said. “They still really need your support. So we're hoping you can come down here, shop today, and then come back and shop this week.”