2017 Best Public-Private Partnership
Wake Forest, NC
Friday Nights on White is a free concert series that is offered on the second Friday of each month, April through September, on White Street in downtown Wake Forest. The $56,000 concert series attracts 8,000 to 15,000 attendees each night.
The series is a partnership between the Town of Wake Forest, thirty-five sponsors, the police and fire departments, volunteers and downtown businesses. The local Baptist seminary and two downtown banks offer their parking lots for the event. The concert series offers three beer truck locations provided by the downtown brewery, fifteen sponsor booths, twelve to fifteen food trucks and well-known cover bands. A large portion of the population was traveling to Raleigh for these types of events, and Wake Forest Downtown, Incorporated wanted to find a way to keep citizens in town for their entertainment needs.
Friday Nights on White has a huge economic impact on the downtown businesses, with many reporting significant increases in sales. In addition, Wake Forest has attracted new developers that are planning mixed-use development projects that will add additional retail, thirty condominiums and ten apartments.