While life certainly isn’t back to normal yet, July felt like the first semi-normal month we’ve had since February. Shops were open, events were scheduled around town and it didn’t hurt that we had a stretch of hot, sunny weather to help beat the doldrums away.
Overall, our website was viewed 16,008 times in July, and our Facebook page reached 7,726 people in the past 28 days. The top articles of the month are a diverse group, covering Lowell events, history and government updates.
Based on website views, here are the most popular articles from July 2020.
With indoor venues closed to large crowds, there hasn’t been much in the way of entertainment in Lowell lately. Three local businesspeople wanted to put an end to that by hosting a drive-in comedy show at Recreation Park. The turnout was good although some of the material reportedly went off the rails and wasn’t the expected PG-13 content. However, the attempt to provide local entertainment was appreciated by many, and money raised went to help rebuild the Lowell Showboat. Our article prior to the event was the fifth most-viewed story of the month.
Each week, the Lowell Area Historical Museum treats us to photos and information from the community’s past. Every entry in the ABCs of Lowell History series seems to be a hit, but the article about Island Park was especially well-read. That may be because not many people seem to know there are islands in the Flat River south of Main Street, let alone that they were once a park.
The big news in June was Steve Bukala’s forced resignation from the post of Lowell Police Chief. The city appointed Sgt. Chris Hurst as the interim Police Chief after his departure, and in July, the position was made permanent. The press release announcing the move was the third-most read article on Lowell’s First Look in July 2020.
Springrove Variety has been a favorite store of Lowell residents for 25 years. However, owner Mike Sprenger is ready to retire and is marking down merchandise as he prepares to shutter the business. While dime stores have an old-school charm, they are being squeezed out of a competitive market that is dominated by big box stores and internet retailers who have the economies of scale on their side. No word yet on what will happen to the Springrove Variety building. Stay tuned.
It’s been about 18 months since there was a Showboat in the Flat River, but Lowell is one step closer to seeing a new boat in the water. Moran Iron Works is Onaway has been constructing pieces of the boat’s shell at its facility and brought them to Lowell last month. Since then, the boat has been almost completely assembled. You can see it for yourself behind the library and near the Riverwalk. In theory, the boat should next go into the water where a general contractor will add all the touches that will make it look like the boat we know and love. However, bids for the remaining work have come in high, and the Rebuild the Showboat Committee is now looking at their options for making up a funding shortfall.
Did your favorite article make the list? Tell us which story you liked best by leaving a comment below or on our Facebook page.