Downtown Festival begins Friday

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  • | 12:00 p.m. April 2, 2003
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Mayor John Delaney will kick off Festival Downtown Friday with the opening of the new $34 million Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. The day will include a softball game at noon between city officials and members of the media. The celebration will continue until 8:30 p.m. with children’s activities, self-guided tours and other free festivities for the public.

“The opening of the ballpark is a great way to highlight all the improvements in downtown,” said Delaney. “The public supported The Better Jacksonville Plan and now its time to celebrate the opening of the first major downtown construction project under the Plan.”

Festival Downtown is a two-month long celebration of festivals, family and cultural events designed to draw people to the downtown area.

Festival Downtown 2003 runs from Friday through May 26.

Here is a list of highlights:

Festival Downtown

2003 Kick-Off Party

Friday-Saturday. Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

Bank of America

Bike Jacksonville

Saturday. Metro Park. Three rides, including a 15-mile San Marco course, a 10-mile Riverside course and a 5-mile Jacksonville Urban course.

The Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville Arts Awards Luncheon

Tuesday. T-U Center. The luncheon celebrates Jacksonville’s cultural community and recognizes leaders in the arts.

Jacksonville Jazz Festival

April 10-13. Multiple venues, including Metropolitan Park, the Landing and the Ritz Theatre and LaVilla Museum.

Jacksonville Suns

opening game

April 11, 7:35 p.m. Tickets from $5.50 to $15.50.

Mixed Media Art Festival

April 11-12. 9th and Main streets in historic Springfield. The festival will feature a reception on Friday night and two days of film, dance and visual arts.

Blessing of the Fleet

April 13. Northbank Riverfront Park.

I Will Praise Him Concert

April 17, 7 p.m. Ritz Theatre. The Ritz Voices and Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir featured soloist Damaris Carbaugh present I Will Praise Him — an Evening of Worship and Praise.

Kid’s Amateur

Night at the Ritz

April 18, 7:30 p.m. Ritz Theatre.

Tickets, $5.50.

Earth Day

April 19. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Landing. More than 75 educational and informational booths from government agencies, environmental offices, and environmentally friendly companies.

FCCJ Artist Series Broadway in Jacksonville

April 15-20. T-U Center. Cathy Rigby in “Seussical the Musical.”

Brown Bag Lunch

Concerts at Florida Ballet

April 22 and 24, 12:10 - 12:50 p.m. Bring your own lunch and enjoy a mid-day ballet performance. $2.

World of Nations Celebration

April 24-27. Metro Park. More than 40 countries represented.

Art After Dark

April 25. Florida Theatre. A premiere showcase for the works of emerging visual artists that includes an art exhibition and sale, featuring a dozen First Coast artists working in several different media. Tickets are $12

Art Opening and Show

April 25. Brooklyn Center for the Arts. Multi-media exhibit featuring local artists and performers.

Hard Hat Loft Tour

April 26, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Tour of downtown residential living options, including lofts and condominiums.

Florida Ballet

Spectrum Concert

April 26. Florida Theatre. Offers an array of dance pieces from classical to contemporary.

Ritz Chamber

Players Spring Concert

April 28. T-U Center.

An Evening of Spoken Word

May 1. Ritz Theatre.

Amateur Night at the Ritz

May 2. Ritz Theatre.

Jacksonville Museum of

Modern Art Grand


May 2-4. JMOMA will re-open its renovated space and new galleries with a ticketed reception on May 2.

Friday Fest

May 2 and first Friday of every month. 4:30 - 8 p.m. Hemming Plaza.

Jax Pride presents Art

Belongs in Public Places

May 2, 1-5:30 p.m. Jacksonville Museum of Modern Art and Hemming Plaza. A free event for the public to explore public art and understand its importance to a creative city.

Fire Memorial

Dedication and Lighting

May 3, 6 p.m. Northbank Riverwalk. Dedication of commissioned sculpture memorializing Jacksonville’s great fire and the city’s rise from the devastation.

City’s Appreciation Event: Thank You Jacksonville

May 3, 7 p.m. - 11 p.m. Berkman Plaza. A public event hosted by the City in appreciation to all those who have volunteered on City boards, commissions, councils and served the city in other ways.

Ben Harper in concert

May 7, 8 p.m. Florida Theatre. Ben Harper is part classic singer/songwriter and part blues revivalist.


Environmental Luncheon

May 9, 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. Osborn Center.

Starry Nights, Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra

May 10. Metro Park.

Ritz Voices Spring Concert

May 10, 7:30 p.m. Ritz Theatre

One Shipyard

Place Open House

May 17, 1 - 4 p.m. Preview the Shipyards project and enjoy a barbecue lunch on the river.

Jacksonville Film Festival

May 16-18. multiple venues. A three-day film festival featuring numerous downtown venues showing independent films, shorts, historical and documentary films.

Sail Jacksonville

May 16-18. downtown riverfront. The three-day festival will include a variety of activities that will feature our scenic riverfront, including in-the-water events, such as the Parade of Sail, land-side demonstrations and events including boat building, port operations, music, seamanship demonstrations and performance artists


Project River Tour

May 17-18. Downtown riverfront. Experience one of the largest and most unique urban park systems on a river tour leaving from downtown.

Springfield Preservation

and Revitalization

Spring Home Tour

May 17-18. A ticketed tour of Springfield’s historic homes.

Spring Music Festival

May 24. Metro Park

Kuumba Festival

May 24-25. A. Philip Randolph Park



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