Fashion show to return to Greenwich Avenue

Feeling fashionable? Then Greenwich Avenue will be the place for you this September.

Late last month, the Board of Selectmen unanimously approved the closure of a portion of Greenwich Avenue on Thursday, Sept. 12, for the annual Fashion on the Avenue celebration, and the event was formally announced at a special press conference outside of Saks last Thursday.

For the last few years this celebration, complete with a red carpet catwalk on the roadway for a fashion show, has been a part of Saks Fifth Avenue’s Fashion Night Out international program. And while this year Saks will not be doing the international celebration again, Greenwich is keeping the popular event that has seen residents turn into models for the night.

“We’re so happy to have the community’s support behind this,” Geri Corrigan, director of marketing for the Greenwich Saks store said on Thursday. “It’s built momentum over the years.”

To accommodate the event, Greenwich Avenue will be closed for vehicles from Lewis Street to Elm Street on Sept. 12 for a four-hour window from 5 to 9 p.m. to allow for things to be set up, the event to be held and then for everything to be taken away. This is the same set-up for the last few years of the fashion show.

This is the third year that Greenwich has done the outdoor fashion show and it has become a popular early fall event. While Saks has taken the lead, other local businesses have signed on to participate in the past and are expected to do so again this year. Ms. Corrigan said that so far there has been a “great response” from local businesses. At last week’s press conference, Marcia O’Kane, president and CEO of the Greenwich Chamber of Commerce, was on hand to offer support as were representatives from other businesses.

Last year about 50 models participated. Ms. Corrigan said the stores will be picking the models and they will again include both professionals and members of the community. She said local stores will be able to contribute their own ideas toward the evening to help improve it and give it a block party atmosphere.

“This has really brought the retail community together,” Ms. Corrigan said. “Stores can partner together to dress models. A shoe store and a jewelry store can partner with another store. Our local salons generously donate hair and makeup. This is a very festive community event and after the fashion show the stores will be having their own events and there will be open houses there to showcase the best we have in Greenwich.”

First Selectman Peter Tesei will once again serve as an honorary chairman for the event. When the selectmen gave their support at their May 23 meeting, he praised the event for giving local businesses “…a good opportunity to showcase their style and their merchandise.”

Selectman David Theis was also quick to give his approval to the event.

“I think anytime we have the opportunity to support our local businesses we should do so,” Mr. Theis said.

Mr. Tesei appeared at the Thursday press conference and said he was very excited to be a part of it, saying that it not only celebrated fashion but supported local businesses. As he has on many occasions, Mr. Tesei discussed the “Greenwich brand” and said that businesses, like the ones on Greenwich Avenue, show the excellence people can expect from the community.

“In Greenwich we are blessed with a vibrant central business district and are lucky to have so many high end retailers providing the goods and services desired by our residents and the surrounding area,” Mr. Tesei said. “I hope this year we can draw more and more members of our community to partake and come out to see what Greenwich Avenue and its surrounding areas have to offer in the way of fashion and accessories. We like to dress for success, as they say, and you really can’t fail with that thanks to Greenwich Avenue.”


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