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Editorial: Block party opportunity to have fun, lend support

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Bartholomew County residents like to have a good time.

Ethnic Expo, Rock the Park and JCB NeighborFest concerts have been among the favorite means of doing so.

People in the area also are willing to support good causes by attending fundraisers such as the annual Our Hospice of South Central Indiana concert and the Reverse Raffle, which supports the Volunteers in Medicine clinic.

Saturday, local residents have an opportunity to do both by attending the Johnson-Witkemper Insurance Biggest Block Party Ever. The event is a lot of fun, and it helps support the Columbus Area Arts Council, ranking as the organization’s second-largest annual fundraiser behind unCommon Cause.

The arts council plays a critical role in enhancing the quality of life in Columbus. It organizes events such as First Friday for Families children’s performances, NeighborFest and Rock the Park.

Residents have shown their appreciation for the arts council’s efforts with strong backing of the block party, the ninth edition of which is about to commence. The event draws 3,000 or more people annually and raised about $38,000 last year.

Continued support is important for this event, which started in 2006 as a way to make up for lagging revenues from other arts events.

The block party is in the heart of the remade downtown and the Fourth Street entertainment corridor. There’s plenty to keep people engaged and entertained. Eleven bands are on the bill. Downtown restaurants are offering food. And the event is family-oriented with face painting, a rock-climbing wall and an extreme trampoline jump among the offerings kids will enjoy.

Attending for the first time — or again — would be a great way to have fun, enjoy what the community has to offer and support a worthy cause.

Let’s get ready to party

WHAT: Johnson-Witkemper Insurance Biggest Block Party Ever, coordinated by Columbus Area Arts Council

WHEN: 6 p.m. to midnight Saturday

WHERE: Along two blocks of Fourth Street and part of Washington Street

COST: $8; children 12 and younger admitted free

INFORMATION: 376-2543;

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