Palm Beach Girl in Downtown Jax

A proud South Florida native, I spent my last summer in Palm Beach County dreading the days when I would be forced to become a “northerner” and move to Jacksonville to attend college. I didn’t think Jacksonville could compare to my beloved West Palm Beach. I refused to go Downtown, I turned up my nose at Town Center and don’t even get me started on the beaches – water should be clear and sand should be soft! Slowly but surely I warmed up to Jacksonville and all the amazing things this city has to offer, especially the Downtown area.

Downtown is home to many amazing festivals and artistic showcases such as One Spark and Art Walk.  One Spark, which premiered this past April, was the world’s first crowd funding festival that featured artists, musicians, inventors, entrepreneurs and innovators. The five-day festival ended with the $250,000 prize money being divvied up among the winners in each of the different categories. One Spark brought huge crowds to Downtown’s core and was considered to be a great success by its creators, partners and the city.

Art Walk is a great opportunity for local artists to show off and sell their art and jewelry. It also allows musicians to play in a public setting and build their fan base. This month, Art Walk will have a flare for the dramatic as it features local theater and improv groups from the Jacksonville area.

Downtown also boasts one of the best nightlife scenes in Northeast Florida. Whether you’re into dub-step and house music or country and line-dancing, there is a bar that fits your needs. New Downtown collaborative effort, The Elbow, allows users to find all of the information about Downtown nightlife in one place. The Downtown bars offer a variety of drink specials from cocktails, to signature brews, which offers something for every bar hopper.  Most bars also have live music or local DJs, so with a little liquid courage, you can dance the night away.

There are also many restaurants and shops that are unique to the Downtown area. I fell in love with Chamblin’s Uptown the moment I walked in and could spend hours searching for books and movies.

The great thing about Downtown is there is always room to grow and people who are willing to put in time and effort into making it an even more beautiful place. With the remodeling and renovations that are in the works for the urban core, it promises to continue to be a community that thrives and flourishes. While you may not be able to change my mind about the beaches, I’m definitely sold on Downtown, and this proud Palm Beach girl is very happy to be living in a Downtown Jacksonville world.

-Emily Gregorchik, DVI intern
DVI offers marketing internships each semester. More information on the program can be found here.