DBA putting 1st ride on redesigned Main Street up for bid

Winner gets bragging rights and a ride in '39 Chevy coupe; proceeds to be used for downtown improvements

By BRUCE ALSOBROOK, News-Telegram Managing Editor

Oct. 3, 2008 - Want to be in the first car to drive down the new and improved Main Street on Monday when the ribbon is cut to officially mark the opening of the road? Well, it's gonna cost you.

But that's not a bad thing. The fact is, the Downtown Business Alliance, whose members are making plans for the big event Monday afternoon, have a good reason to charge for the first ride.

The idea is to auction off the chance to be in that first car that drives over the newly-laid brick pavers. They'll be going in style, too, making the short haul in the 1939 Chevrolet Coupe owned by Eugene and Rita Edwards, who run Edwards Used Cars on Gilmer Street about two blocks south of the city square.

Rita Edwards, who is also the president of the Downtown Business Alliance, will also be leading a host of antique, custom and classic cars and trucks down Main Street filled with City Council members and county commissioners, as well as Downtown Revitalization Board and DBA members.

The money raised through the auction will, as Mrs. Edwards put it, "go toward whatever needs to be done downtown."

"It could go for more Christmas decorations or something else that may come up that we think we need," Edwards said. "But whatever money we raise goes back into the downtown one way or the other."

The ceremonies begin Monday at 4:30 p.m. with live music, food and drinks. The official ribbon-cutting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m., preceded by the auction at 5:15 p.m.

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