Editorial

Bustling weekend did not happen by accident

Monday, October 9, 2017

Some weekends are better than others.

Cape Girardeau merchants will attest to that claim when the perfect storm materialized over two sunny days on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1. It was a festive weekend in town with the Nina and Pinta replicas docked on the riverfront and myriad activities going on, including Southeast Missouri State University’s Parents’ Weekend. The local businesses were among those to enjoy the bounty.

“Best days we ever had,” Cream of the Crust owner Charles Bertrand told Southeast Missourian reporter Tyler Graef. “I’ve been down here 15 years, and this was a perfect situation ... the best weekend we’ve ever had, and that says a lot.”

Others were saying the same, including the Nina’s first mate, Kat Wilson, who saw 2,500 visitors board her ships each day. She said the day was so busy, she could recall only one downtown area busier — and that was Pittsburgh. We’re quite sure she’ll remember Cape Girardeau and tell others, which is exactly what Visit Cape, Old Town Cape and the Cape Girardeau Area Chamber of Commerce have strived toward for years. With the recent renovations on Broadway and Main Street, and other impressive features like the Southeast Missouri State University River Campus and Bill Emerson Memorial Bridge, the city is looking better. With additions like the museum at Heritage Hall, plenty of shopping, eateries of all kinds and a night scene, this old river town has spun some new charm. New venues like the Cape Girardeau SportsPlex and the Drury Plaza Hotel Cape Girardeau Conference Center in other parts of town bring visitors and only add to the increased foot traffic downtown.

Much like Christopher Columbus, it’s old world and new world coming together. And we’re discovering it’s good for the local economy when you get on the map.

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