Heat, extra large space mark Iowa City downtown block party’s return

Published: Jul. 24, 2021 at 11:37 PM CDT
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IOWA CITY, Iowa (KCRG) - The downtown Iowa City block party made a comeback on Saturday night after a year off, and it was a hot one out.

“I’m already sweating a little bit,” Michael Kratochvil, a graduate student at the University of Iowa, said.

Kratochvil was one of the hundreds of people who spent their Saturday evening at the Iowa City Block party. The event was canceled in 2020 because of the pandemic and came back in a big way with 14 blocks closed off.

“It felt good to get back out with my friends,” Kratochvil said.

More blocks shut down meant more businesses participated and room for people to spread out, but also the need to stay hydrated. Saturday was one of the hottest days of the year so far.

“I have my water bottle in my backpack, and I went into my favorite stores that have air conditioning if it got too hot,” Kratochvil said.

Nancy Bird, the executive director of the Iowa City Downtown District, said Kratochvil’s preparedness was exactly what she hoped others shared so the focus could be on supporting the downtown.

“This event was an important one for our community,” Bird said. “We wanted to get the community back together and encourage them to come out of their homes.”

Bird said the stations all had plenty of water and there was a place for people to lay down if the heat was getting to be too much for people.

“You have to come prepared yourself,” Kratochvil said. “Make sure you cool yourself off and don’t overdo the physical activity.”

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