Sunday, December 27, 2009

New Year's Resolution: Experience Downtown Cincinnati

I was born and raised in a suburb of St. Louis. We went to "the city" for Cardinals' baseball games, Blues' hockey games, occasional shopping at Stix, Baer, & Fuller, and special-occasion dinners. Other than that, we went to school, worked, shopped, and played in our little suburban world.
I went to college at Miami University in the picture-perfect rural collegiate town of Oxford, Ohio. Then I moved to suburban Cincinnati where I taught school at a suburban school for 9 years. After that, my husband and I started our business of building homes primarily in suburbia. We raised our 2 children in the suburbs and sent them to a typical suburban school. We go "downtown" to conduct business with the building department, to attend Bengals and Reds games, to visit my urban professional brother, and to dine out for that special occasion.
However, something strange has happened over the last year or so. I've always enjoyed visiting big cities---New York City, Washington DC, Chicago, Paris, and Copenhagen are among my favorites. I've also enjoyed visiting my brother's Liberty Hill townhouse near Over-the-Rhine and occasionally walking to a Reds' game from there. However, in the last year, I've felt the lure of downtown Cincinnati in a strange new way.
Part of the attraction stems from our new fresh produce market venture at Findlay Market---the challenge of a new business, the diversity of the clientele, the risks involved in trying something different. But a bigger part of the lure is the downtown buzz I've felt from the Twitter followers I've connected with through @daisymaesmarket. When I hear about who is eating gelato or waffles at Findlay Market, who is shopping at Gateway Quarter, who is looking for a condo at 12th and Vine, I feel a new sort of excitement. Believe it or not, I actually feel younger. I admire the entrepreneurs who dare to take a chance and get in on the ground floor as Cincinnati undergoes a renaissance. I envy the urban dwellers who have their choice of where to eat or shop within a few blocks of their homes. It makes me want to leave my mundane world of cul-de-sacs and garage door openers and head downtown to experience something creative and electric.
Yes, this middle-aged suburbanite has actually considered New Year's Eve on Fountain Square. Wouldn't it be fun to be ice skating and drinking at an ice bar as we bring in the new year in downtown Cincinnati? Wouldn't it be fun to share a drink with others who live, work, and play in the city? So much potential, so many people to meet...What's holding me (and you) back?
Let's start 2010 with a resolution to experience more in this wonderful city of Cincinnati. I'll be looking for you on Fountain Square, at Findlay Market, and in the Gateway Quarter. Cincinnati is on the move---Don't be left behind.
Here's to a Happy New Year! Come share it with me in 2010.


  1. You are representative of our changing times, a person who once built suburban homes now selling produce at Findlay Market! I love it.

    I would suggest that you and your husband buy a vacant building and rehab it. You don't have to live there full time, it could be some apartments with a storefront for example, but you have the construction backround to make such an endeavor work and we desperately need people to take-on these vacant buildings.

  2. Thanks for your comments, CityKin. We're actually exploring such options. Should be exciting to see what 2010 brings.