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Until a couple of years ago, Downtown Main Street in Lakewood Ranch, Florida, was a little known place. It is a "Main Street" concept that is a little more high end, and was having trouble keeping store fronts in place, especially when the economy took a downturn. If you've been in the past, but haven't been there in the last year or two, you may want to take a drive over there and see for yourself the changes that have taken place.
The first thing you will notice is that the store fronts are mostly full with unique shopping and restaurants for all tastes including Russian, Italian, Scottish, Seafood, etc.... All of the restaurants and eateries have indoor and al fresco dining making it a pet friendly area. A movie theater and miniature golf course make it a good family friendly outting, too. There is even a painting studio and art studio so that those that want to use their creative skills can hang out for a couple of hours and come home with a masterpiece of their own.
Every month, on the first Friday of the month, is First Friday On Main St. which is a music filled evening from local bands. Vendors from around Main Street or close by set up tents and sell additional food and drinks to passersby. The shops stay open a little later that night so that you can enjoy the music as you stroll through and admire the merchandise. Couples and families alike set up chairs in the middle of the street surrounding the band to enjoy the evening. Plenty of pets are around and seem to have as much fun as the people do. It's really a perfect place to hang out and have fun for a few hours.
At different times of the year you'll find activities that have been planned for the area, including farmers market days, Halloween night where local vendors get together and line the streets with safe activities and candy for all of the kids that come by. Around mid December they have activities set up for the kids like making decorations, visiting Santa Claus, ice skating, and even enjoying a sleigh ride around "town". If you're looking for something fun to do with your family you won't have a better time, and most of the events are free to boot!
There are many other events scheduled throughout the year so if you go to their website http://www.lakewoodranch.com/events/events-festivals.cfm you can get a complete list of what's happening there so you can make sure you don't miss out.