Old Town wins big in Top of the Town awards

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In a local publication’s citywide search for the best of the best, Lansing’s Old Town took home three awards that community leaders hope will raise awareness of what the area has to offer.

In the publication Lansing City Pulse’s 2012 Top of the Town contest, a poll taken every year to determine what participants think are the best services and places in the Lansing area, Old Town took home three first place awards — “Best Place to Be Seen,” “Best Place to Take Out-of-Towners” and “Best Place to Take Someone on a First Date.”

This year, more than 13,000 greater Lansing residents took part in the “Top of the Town” voting process, according to an article in City Pulse.

Old Town Commercial Association Executive Director Louise Gradwohl said this is not the first time Old Town has received such awards from the annual contest, but every time the Old Town community receives one, it only adds to the exposure.

“I think it’s pretty awesome to get three awards and get such a nice spread in City Pulse, to get highlighted like that,” Gradwohl said. “We feel as though it exemplifies the brand of Old Town a bit more and makes people in the greater Lansing area more interested in what we have to offer.”

And the offerings of Old Town are more than just an individual business or store, Gradwohl said — it’s an experience.

“It’s more of an artsy area, we have a lot of events and festivals and things that we don’t even put out of this office that bring more of an interest to Old Town,” she said.

Michigan State University genetics and plant biology sophomore Pierce Rouse said Old Town is well deserving of the awards it received.

Rouse, who said he goes to Old Town frequently but will visit more once he has his own transportation on campus, said he thinks the awards will better showcase a unique part of the Lansing area.

“I knew Old Town before it won any awards, but I’m happy it won so other people could know its greatness,” Rouse said.

Michigan State University journalism freshman Kailei Trykowski was more skeptical of the effect the award could have on the public’s perception of Old Town and said true understanding of what Old Town is lies in actual experience of the area.

“Awards don’t say much — I think experience speaks more than awards, and people need to go and submerse themselves in Old Town,” Trykowski said. “It’s really cool and artsy, and it speaks for itself.”

Gradwohl said she and other community members were happy for the recognition from the awards, and the certificates the community received for the honors will go up in the Old Town Commercial Association office.

“We’re just really excited, and a lot of the business owners are excited to be recognized by the community,” Gradwohl said. “Apparently Old Town was, by popular vote, just the place to be.”


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