LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – It’s a quaint, small town atmosphere where everyone is close-knit and local business owners support one another…it’s Lansing’s Old Town and it’s come a long way over the years.
“When I first came here it was a ghost town and most of the buildings were boarded up,” said Terry Terry.
Terry Terry moved to Old Town back in the 80’s and is one of the many people who brought this area back to life.
He says Old Town used to be empty and nearly abandoned but he says he knew just what to do to get the area back up on its feet.
“A handful of us artists got together, fixed up a few buildings, had some art galleries and then I organized the Old Town Art and Oktoberfest and then the Lansing Jazz Fest and then Michigan Blues Fest and the festivals just sort of helped kick off and show that Lansing was a great place in the downtown…a great place to live, work and play,” Terry stated.
Terry says Old Town rely’s heavily on its festivals held throughout the year especially during the summer.
“Without doubt major economic impact, without doubt,” Terry added.
“I’ll tell you the reason that it grows is just the true grit of the people that work here,” said Vanessa Shafer; Executive Director of the Old Town Commercial Association.
Shafer says Old Town thrives because of its festivals including the Festival of the Moon and Sun which draws tons of people to the area and adds to the revitalization of Old Town.
“Without these festivals, the people of Old Town would still rally together but this gives them a place to go when they need assistance,” Shafer stated.
It may just be music, drinks and a good time for the community but once people head on over to Old Town, they keep on coming back to help this small town feel flourish.