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As We See It

Why is it so hard to join the party Downtown?

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Illustration: Marvin Lucas

I’m not sure when I realized I was missing the party Downtown, but once the notion dawned on me, it stuck. It gnawed on me when I saw running groups jog by on Bonneville or when photos of the Learning Village’s inspirational speakers popped up on my Facebook feed. Not because I begrudge anyone their evening exercise or wide-eyed listening. But because if there’s some all-encompassing community bulletin board advertising such things, I haven’t seen it. And because, well, I want in.

There’s been a lot of talk recently about the cliqueiness of the new Downtown—that if you don’t work for Zappos/get funding from Downtown Project/live at the Ogden/sort of live at the Beat you simply aren’t welcome in the goings on within the Fremont Street corridor. I don’t see it that way.

What I see is a lack of information and a lack of urgency. I see the shiny new Inspire Theater with no event calendar on its website (although one is supposedly in the works). I see outdated listings on the Downtown Project’s Community & Events page (which makes it sorta hard for the community to participate in events). I see an organization so full of friendly, social people that it sometimes forgets about all friendly, social people who don’t live and work within a five-block radius. And that’s a shame. Because I’m not the only one missing out on the party Downtown. And that means Downtown is missing out on us.

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