On October 26, Quincy Main Street’s first Harvest Sip and Stroll of 2023 was held in the courthouse square in Downtown Quincy.
Participants of legal age were encouraged to sip on one of the selections of spirits offered and stroll the whole of the Quincy Square, with most of the businesses showcasing their various goods, foods and services. Many said that it was their first time visiting many of the businesses on the Square.
“The Sip & Stroll is an event we have been wanting to do for years,” said Dawn McMillan, local artist and President of the Quincy Main Street Board of Directors. “With all of the businesses opening and building renovations happening, it was a perfect time to show off downtown Quincy. We are hoping to have these monthly.”
According to Dawn, volunteers assisted in the decoration of the Quincy Square, whilst Devonte King, a local artist, was hired to paint lively Fall window murals which shall be showcased all season.
One of the two businesses being previewed, The White Rabbit Market opened to the public for the first time in a sneak peek. Owned by Robby and John Hinson, both local Gadsden residents, the White Rabbit Market seeks to provide a market of goods one cannot necessarily, say, find on Amazon – a selection of handcrafted, tailored, and niche goods.
“Rustic, chic, unique boutique is one of our slogans,” said Robby Hinson, recently retired from a job in an information technology department from Maclay High School in Tallahassee. Moving back to Quincy after 24 years, he and his husband, John, sought to build a business with the support of Quincy MainStreet.
“We wanted to help Quincy and support growth in the region, to help build Quincy into an equivalent market for visiting, not unlike, say, the current way Thomasville is to Tallahassee. Our other slogan is ‘An upscale retail market with a wide variety of goods and gifts.’”
The White Rabbit Market opens on November 1, this Wednesday, and the ribbon cutting ceremony shall be held on November the 18.
Bantam Bay and Company, right alongside the White Rabbit Market, were also previewing for the first time as a new business in the courthouse square. Serving homemade Sangria, various sorts of decade-old wines, and a few beers with an assortment of charcuterie boards available, Bantam Bay provides the taste of delicacy with a balance of Florida History.
Various automobile enthusiast signs littered the walls on the evening of the first Sip & Stroll.
“We are so surprised by all of the patrons who have come out to the opening,” said Jennifer LaCognata, owner of Bantam Bay and Company and organizer of the local Quincy Farmers Market. “We didn’t expect such crowds of people, so we are pleasantly enthused to be serving everyone. Despite a few technical hiccups that we have had, we hope to be opening for business very soon. Quincy Strong!”
Other participating businesses included Big Papa’s Chophouse, who held live music – acoustic ballads played by local six-string picker Alan Nelson, Q-Dogs and Ice Cream, Royal Soul Food Express, Monterey Cigar Social – who, nearby one of the painted murals, held a stand of refreshments, What Kind Cupcakery, Kavannah’s Sweet Boutique, and Gadsden Arts Center & Museum – showcasing their new exhibit, “Twentieth Century Painting in Iceland: Art from the Land of Ice and Fire,” Padgett Jewelers – holding a sale on various items, The Filling Station Vintage Petroleum Collection, LR’s Bar, and the Royal Soul Food Express.
All of these businesses, through the request of the Quincy Main Street, were available to both Sip and Stroll through until the close of the event with a few of them holding concurrent events.
The next Quincy Sip and Stroll is set for December 7, 2023 from 5 to 7 p.m.
It will be known as the “Holiday Shopping Sip and Stroll,” as it is going to be held during the December holiday season.
Ruben D. Uribe – Gadsden County News Service