By Tori Mason

DENVER (CBS4) – Foot traffic is picking up along the 16th Street Mall. As more people get vaccinated, the more Denver returns to its old self. The Downtown Denver Partnership and the City & County of Denver are hoping locals will reconnect with old favorites through Meet in the Street.

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Meet in the Street is a summer festival along the 16th Street Mall that takes place four weekends over the summer. The first kicks off Memorial Day Weekend, May 29-31. Meet in the Street will take place one weekend each month through September. 
 
Extended restaurant patios and activities, like rock climbing and cornhole, will be available. Guests can also check out the live music series, Upper DownTUNES at both Denver Pavilions Plazas and The Outer Space at 16th & Welton in Upper Downtown. 
 
“We’re really excited about having people come back downtown and doing it safely, being outside, being able to be in an outdoor space and choose what that looks like from a safety perspective,” said Kate Barton, SVP of the Executive Office at Downtown Denver Partnership. “The city has been great partners and we’re making sure that downtown is a safe and welcoming place where people want to spend time.”

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Last summer, pedestrians would see empty sidewalks and boarded windows as they walked through Downtown Denver. Friday afternoon, it was tough to find street parking near the 16th Street Mall.

“It’s all about bringing family and friends to the downtown core. This is the time to come down and support restaurants and retailers if you haven’t already. Denver’s back!

The 16th Street Mall Ride will not operate during those four weekends of Meet on the Streets. Instead, Free Metro Ride will run down 15th and 17th Streets. It’s still a requirement for all RTD customers to wear masks, but each business along the mall has their own rules.

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Tourists new to Denver said it was nice to see smiling faces along the mall. Glenda and her children, Gretchen and William, spent their first vacation in years in Denver.

“I love it here! I think I might move here instead,” said Gretchen, a recent college graduate. She and her brother had never been to Denver.

 For more information, visit downtowndenver.com.

Tori Mason