Queen Street party returns to downtown Sault Ste. Marie

Sault Ste. Marie's downtown is partying once again after a year off due to the pandemic.

The city's downtown business association held its annual Queen Street Party, inviting residents to shop local and take in some live entertainment.

"A lot of the members in the area wanted to do this and they wanted to see some type of activity in the area," said Salvatore Marchese, executive director at the Downtown Association. "That's what we're trying to do right now."

Saturday's forecast called for periods of rain throughout the day, dampening the festivities a bit.

But for local vendors, it hasn't ruined their moods.

"Queen Street has been quite interesting, but I'm happy to see more people," said Stephanie Harman, owner of Stephanie's Joy, an upscale thrift store in the downtown core.

Harman opened her store two months ago and said opening up in the midst of a pandemic has been challenging.

However, she said her experience downtown has been a pleasant one so far and is wanting to give back.

"It's an opportunity for me to help the local people. We have free coffee and free lunch for anyone who wants to have it," Harman said.

While the rain and the pandemic might've prevented large crowds from returning, the downtown association said hosting Saturday's event will help it create bigger and better events in the future.