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October 2021

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Hello MidTowners!

Welcome to MidTown Momentum – a new monthly digital newsletter to inform MidTown’s supporters, partners, and friends about the most important goings-on in the heart of our Columbus community.

Each month we’ll highlight a little bit of what’s going on in our neighborhoods to keep you abreast of timely events, our most important efforts, hidden gems, and maybe even an occasional peek behind the curtains. There will be plenty to cover, as we’ve got a lot on our plates for the rest of this year and on into 2022.

They say you can’t keep a good thing down, and it’s in that spirit that we have great news to share about two key MidTown initiatives:

·      After a Covid-mandated one-year hiatus, the MidTown Mingle made a triumphant return, celebrating our 10th Anniversary with record-breaking numbers.

·      Things will soon be back on track with the 13th Street resurfacing project timeline. Details below.

We hope you enjoy our MidTown, Inc. newsletter and look for another MidTown Momentum next month. 


Julio A. Portillo, Jr.

Executive Director

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October 14th marked the return of the MidTown Mingle, with our 10th in-person celebration. Staged at Lakebottom Park this year, the Mingle had a record-breaking crowd of 925 attendees who enjoyed music from the Chattahoochee Pine Beatles, a great meal – juicy pork chops, delicious grilled chicken, squash casserole, sweet potatoes and a fall salad – catered by Scott Ressmeyer with Country’s Barbecue, and donated desserts from Chick-fil-A, Midtown Coffee House, and Fred Schladensky. Beer and wine were generously donated by Triangle Distributors and Georgia Crown. In all, the event generated close to $125,000 through sponsorships, ticket sales, and in-kind donations to further MidTown’s goals. Congratulations to park residents Amy and Rob Ward III, winners of Maudie Huff's Mingle 2021 painting, Afternoon in the Park, which was sold in a sealed-bid auction. Maudie was the perfect choice as our 2021 artist not only for her talent and beautiful portfolio of work, but also for being a long time Lakebottom Park resident. 

It was fun standing in the park and imagining that very same space 130 years ago-the heart of MidTown- as a shallow lake with small boats, a bowling alley, a dance pavilion, and even a zoo! The city purchased the private land in 1924, using some of it for the construction of Columbus High School and officially renaming the rest of it Weracoba Park, in honor of the adjacent creek.

We’d like to send out a big THANK YOU to all of our sponsors of our signature event, and especially to this year’s chair, Crystal Trawick, and a stellar team of volunteer committees with ongoing support from the previous chairs. And another thank-you to graphic designer Cam Addison, a MidTown resident, who designed the Mingle logo in 2011 and has created all of our printed materials for the past ten years as in-kind donations to our organization.


Many thanks to all of our 2021 Sponsors

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Scratching the (re)surface on 13th Street

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City leaders have informed us that the road resurfacing and re-striping on Spur 22 from Veterans Parkway to Reese Road – that includes 13th Street from 5th Avenue to 13th Avenue, as well as Macon Road – is moving forward. The work is slated to begin at Veterans Parkway, tentatively scheduled for the spring.

The roadwork is another cog in the plans to improve the beauty and safety of the corridor connecting MidTown to Uptown. While we eagerly anticipate the resurfacing, we are moving forward and developing ideas to further beautify and soften this Midtown gateway with several key partners, including architect Will Barnes and Trey Carmack, who owns a significant portion of the corridor’s commercial property. Remember, slow down on your drive through this area and enjoy our partner businesses' murals! We want to change drivers’ habits to make the thoroughfare friendlier to all road users and to ignite economic growth in this core area of MidTown.

Thanks go to the Knight Fund and SouthArts for financially supporting LightUp MidTown - a public art initiative geared towards making 13th Street a more vibrant and lively corridor. We are grateful for the City of Columbus’s commitment to the roadwork. And we also thank you, our MidTown residents and businesses, for your continued support and patience while we strive to enhance our MidTown community.

MidTown has Character(s)

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Around MidTown, most folks know D.L. Jordan as a Columbus builder and real estate developer. But his readers know him as the novelist Donald Jordan. His latest book, Fearfully and Wonderfully Made, is set in Columbus and is part coming-of-age and part ghost story in the New South. His prior novel, Negative Space, is also set in the Fountain City. It is the author’s hope that the town’s literary significance will again grow in prominence. To that end, he has established the Donald L. Jordan Prize for Literary Excellence, which offers a $10,000 prize for an unpublished novel, collection of short stories, memoir, or essay collection as well as a publication contract with DLJ Books at Columbus State University. Acclaimed author Janisse Ray won the 2021 prize. Mr. Jordan generously donates royalties from his own book sales to charitable causes.

Jordan’s books are available on and through other booksellers. You can learn more about his novels and the Jordan Prize – and see some of his watercolor artwork – at his website.

Thank you for reading MidTown Momentum!

MidTown, Inc.: Sustaining and enhancing the neighborhoods and businesses in MidTown Columbus

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MidTown, Inc.

1236 Wildwood Avenue Columbus, GA 31906

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