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Center City Block Party moves locations

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This year's annual downtown block party in Amarillo is relocating and some business owners are unhappy they won't be included in this year's festivities.

Businesses like Bodegas and Wild Card say they're upset because the block party moving locations will take away from their business. Bodegas owner Oscar Gamboa says, "What I'm concerned about is, I'm down here every single year trying to make it, not just one day. Are we going to lose out? Yea we're going to lose out, but downtown business owners are missing out because of the attraction of the Polk Street party to attract people downtown. Not just one time a year, the whole year round."

Gamboa says it's a great way to promote and showcase their business to thousands of people from across the panhandle. He says he spoke with Center City and asked why the change in location.

He says, "Business owners were selling product a dollar cheaper than they were selling it. And the other reason is because they got a major sponsorship to move the Polk Street party to move it to right in front of their business location."

Center City says Amarillo National Bank is their title sponsor, and they want to hold a dedication for their new sign in front of their bank location.

Executive Director Beth Duke says, "We're trying to bring back that nostalgic neon to Polk Street. And this gave us a great opportunity to use that for a 10 o'clock sign lighting. And we think that's going to bring a lot of excitement to the party. You know it's been going on for 19 years. And we want to be sure we always keep it fresh."

The party will be moving North on Polk. It used to be between 10th and 7th, but this year, it'll be between 7th and 4th.

Duke says, "We're keeping 7th open. Which should help Center City Furniture, Crush and also the Courtyard by Marriott. Because last year everything went great, but we did have some confusion with some out of town guests who didn't know that the party was going on."

The block party's location could change next year depending on how businesses are affected.

Jessica Abuchaibe, NewsChannel 10.

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