If you’ve driven through the Village of Ellicottville on any given Friday evening over the last two summers, you probably noticed something a bit different … was that a fire dancer? Oh look, there goes a stilt walker. Check out that live band on the sidewalk …
It was Stroll the Streets (STS), an initiative first brought up by John and Christy Rounds of Adventure Bound onthefly. While catching up with John to learn about the third season of STS, he couldn’t stop praising the STS Committee. “It is one thing to have an idea; everyone has ideas. Not all of them can turn it into reality. The STS Committee has worked SO hard to make this event successful.”
The original concept of STS was to develop more awareness of the family friendly environment Ellicottville offers.
The Friday night series offers an array of FREE (yes, you read that correctly) activities. Everything from face painters, balloon twisters, magicians, caricature artists, kids yoga and more! And many of the fabulous boutiques extend their hours a little later than normal for you to peruse. Participants also have the opportunity to blow giant bubbles with our Village Mayor John Burrell. Plenty of other fun activities fill the sidewalks of downtown, including fly fishing casting demos, chalk art, henna tattoos, live music, prize wheel and photo booth.
“We wanted an event that families can plan their arrival around and create a reason for shops and boutiques to stay open. This way they say, ‘Oh, let's go to Ellicottville for dinner and get there in time to ‘stroll the streets’.’ This event has grown into something special for the local community and visitors. “There are some people you will only see on Fridays for STS. It is so unique to see the locals gather with their friends and families; there aren’t many places anymore that you can let your kids run around and not worry about them; they are safe.”
The 2018 series kicks off June 29 and will run every Friday through August 31 starting at 5pm. The event is presented by the Rotary Foundation for Youth and sponsored by DiMarco Vein Centers, Peters & Moriarty, Shults Automotive, Weed Ross Agency, Balloons, Villaggio and M&T Bank. Rounds noted that they are still actively soliciting sponsors; anyone interested can contact him for more information.
When asked if there was anything else he wanted to share about this year’s event (i.e. new additions, etc.) a child-like grin spread across John’s face. “We are still in the initial phase, but we want to add a Farmer’s Market to the last four Fridays.” As he said this, my eyes lit up because it only makes sense. With Ellicottville being surrounded by fabulous farms, the fact that we don’t have one already almost seems wrong. Rounds hopes this will take off and turn into its own event for next summer, but for now, he is excited to add it to STS. His goal is to “get three to four ‘anchor’ vendors so that we can do a test run." They hope to have homemade pies, mustard, assorted fruits and vegetables, along with maple syrup and honey.
So if you are looking for a fun way to kick off your summer weekends in Ellicottville, head downtown into the village with the family and “Stroll the Streets”. Keep tabs on this year’s STS activities by following “Stroll the Streets Ellicottville” on Facebook. To show your support as a sponsor or if you have any questions, reach out to John Rounds at Adventure Bound onthefly, 716-217-4047 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.