Frequently Asked Questions

What is First Friday?

On the First Friday of every month of the year, Broad Street in downtown Gadsden is closed to traffic. The parking spaces are filled with Classic Cars, a few motorcycles, food vendors and more. Stores stay open late into the evening and downtown rocks with live entertainment, special events, sales, food and artists from all over. The fun starts at 6:00 pm and doesn’t end until 9:00 pm during the warmer months. As the air cools, the fun happens from 5:00 – 8:00 pm. Each month usually brings a different theme or focus. Details are always available on this web site.

I have a really great band. How do we get booked at First Friday?

Bands are booked on a first come, first served basis. First Friday does not generate revenue for DGI, so be prepared to play for free, unless you are able to secure a sponsor. Bands are welcome to bring tip jars and sell CDs or other merchandise during the performance. Simply call our office, 256-547-8696 and we will talk to you about the next available date.  Bands and musicians are strategically placed in almost every block of Broad, so we can accommodate five bands per month. There is no stage or equipment available. You must be prepared to bring everything you will need. You should also be prepared for DGI to adjust the volume as necessary. Because of the long waiting list, groups will only be allowed to play/perform once a year.

I represent a non-profit organization in our community. Can I set up a table on First Friday night to raise money for our organization or to pass out information?

First Friday began with just a few downtown merchants. These merchants were looking for a way to draw people downtown to shop in their stores, eat in their restaurants and re-discover the art and culture of Downtown Gadsden. They made the decision to stay open late on the First Friday of each month, invited a few classic car owners to cruise in, a few entertainers to perform and the rest, as they say, is history.
As First Friday has grown into a regional event that has exceeded all expectations, the original purpose of First Friday has not changed. Everything we do on First Friday is designed to keep the event fun, festive and a way to draw people downtown into the shops and restaurants.  First Friday is a downtown merchants event.  Donation tables and information tables do not add to the First Friday experience.  Therefore, we do not allow fundraising and/or distribution of information of any kind.  

I own/operate a local business in our community. Can I set up a table on First Friday night to hand out business cards/flyers, etc.?

First Friday began with just a few downtown merchants. These merchants were looking for a way to draw people downtown to shop in their stores, eat in their restaurants and re-discover the art and culture of Downtown Gadsden. They made the decision to stay open late on the First Friday of each month, invited a few classic car owners to cruise in, a few entertainers to perform and the rest, as they say, is history.
As First Friday has grown into a regional event that has exceeded all expectations, the original purpose of First Friday has not changed. Everything we do on First Friday is designed to keep the event fun, festive and a way to draw people downtown into the shops and restaurants.  Information tables do not add to the First Friday experience. Therefore, we respectfully ask that you do not use First Friday as a form of advertising. 

My church/organization would like to set up a table and give away water/candy/promotional items on First Friday as a way to give back to our community. How do we go about doing that?

First Friday began with just a few downtown merchants. These merchants were looking for a way to draw people downtown to shop in their stores, eat in their restaurants and re-discover the art and culture of Downtown Gadsden. They made the decision to stay open late on the First Friday of each month, invited a few classic car owners to cruise in, a few entertainers to perform and the rest, as they say, is history.
As First Friday has grown into a regional event that has exceeded all expectations, the original purpose of First Friday has not changed. Everything we do on First Friday is designed to keep the event fun, festive and a way to draw people downtown into the shops and restaurants.  Information tables do not add to the First Friday experience, even when you are giving something away. Therefore, we respectfully ask that you do not set up an information table at First Friday.

How do I become a First Friday food vendor?

In order to participate, you must be licensed to do business in the City of Gadsden.  You must also be approved by the Etowah County Health Department. Contact Sandra Looney at 256-547-6311 for more information. Once you have obtained Etowah County Health Department approval, please complete the Food Vendor Application and submit it for approval. Space is limited but we will be happy to add you to our waiting list if no space is available.

How do I become a First Friday merchandise vendor?

First Friday is a downtown Gadsden merchants event, created to draw potential customers into the downtown area to shop, eat and be entertained. At this time, we are not accepting applications from non-food vendors.