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We need a little Christmas

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The T-G starts its first in a series of articles looking at the construction ugliness which has befallen on the historic public square right before some of the merchants’ biggest shopping days.  

Could this construction have been delayed? Was this a City project already delayed so long that it was unavoidable? How will this effect public square merchants— all who’ve been hit pretty hard over the last year already with the pandemic? Where will shoppers park in the coming weeks, since store fronts are under construction? When will this City sidewalk project be finished? What was the point of it all? Will Santa get a lot of mud on his boots when visiting such shops at The Gingham Jellybean in the coming weeks? Will business customers be endangering themselves when he has to make his insurance payment or when he’s stopping off for a bit to eat at the Coffee Break? Have merchants been treated fairly during this inopportune time of sidewalk repair? Some say they had to take some pretty serious action.  

The Times-Gazette will be talking with those local merchants about how they’re pressing on toward the holidays, despite the war zone of construction taking place in front of their businesses. The City’s annual Christmas parade, which ventures around the square, will be 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 4. Many have already prepared their store front windows for Christmas shoppers. (See story today by Zoe Haggard.)  

Other towns are decorating and preparing for the holidays. How will the public square in Shelbyville look this year? Is this advantageous for the local economy on the heels of COVID-19? Contact zhaggard@t-g. com or dhankins@t-g. com if you’re a merchant and need some assistance with getting the word out to customers (parking, directions, etc.) how to avoid this mess—ditches, culverts and construction cones—during the holidays.  

We are trying to get to the bottom of how this all plays out into Thanksgiving and Christmas for shoppers and of course, store owners.  

Was last Christmas not bad enough for shoppers and merchants? Now this in 2021?  

The City of Shelbyville will also be contacted in an effort to shed some light on what seems like a 2021 holiday faux pas— that is, an ill-timed project obviously being pushed through to fruition. 

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