DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Dayton businesses added up the benefits of Urban Nights Monday. The event on Friday night was expected to bring in lots of people and money to downtown businesses.
Organizers expected 30,000 people to attend Friday’s event.
They were just short of reaching that goal, with 27,000 attendees, but those that did attend made a significant impact on local business.
Urban Nights may be a free event, but organizers said it still pays off.
Having thousands attend means increased business for local restaurants, art galleries, stores and more.
“Sometimes it’s new customers, people returning, and for the most important part is that they’re bringing friends and getting to see what’s new and what they’ve got to offer this time around and long term, it really helps the downtown area businesses to really grow their customer base and for people to realize what they have to offer,” said Valerie Beerbower with Downtown Dayton Partnership, which organizes the event.
Beerbower said the event is also free publicity for smaller businesses that may not have the means to promote their products.
Urban Nights gives them a platform to showcase what downtown has to offer.
“It’s important to young professionals who want to live and work here. It’s important to business outside the region who want to have a strong downtown core. It’s important to us as a region to be able to attract new businesses to our City Center to be able to say, to speak collectively to say we have all these amenities at our disposal,” said the organizer.
Urban Nights highlighted those amenities with new hot spots that featured the arts, fashion and local bands.
And despite two arrest for gun possession at the event, organizers said it was overall a safe and fun place to be Friday night.
The organization has several other events to highlight downtown.
From May until September, you can head to Courthouse Square for a lunchtime treat .
The event is called “The Square is Where” and it will have free musical performances and games.