After hacking my way through the Owatonna Chamber of Commerce and Tourism's annual golf event at Owatonna Country Club, I happily strolled around downtown without creating a single divot or losing another golf ball. Instead I enjoyed music, chatted with several folks and learned a little about a brew pub for Owatonna.

The inaugural 'Downtown Thursday' is a brainchild of Owatonna's MainStreet program. In a news release, they stated, "The goal is to create an event where people stop downtown for food, music, artists, makers and shopping, like Rochester's evening events on Thursdays."

North Cedar was closed to vehicles with artist vendor tents lining the middle of the street. Many downtown businesses were open with sidewalk displays in most cases. Food options line Central Park. A huge crowd was packed into the park to enjoy local duo DeKam and Johnson.

MainStreet conducted community surveys and interviews earlier this year and found, "a resounding call for a vibrant downtown Owatonna, a place where people could see themselves hanging out with friends outside of work."

I had fun talking with people about the upcoming Owatonna High School football season (it should be another good one), Aces baseball (the region tournament continues this weekend at Fuller Field at Dartt's Park) and the brew pub (plans call for a multi-level establishment downtown opening in 2019).

No one asked me about my golf game.

Download the KRFO app for local news and sports. Also read, changes coming to the Owatonna City Open. Pairings and tee-times were announced Thursday for this weekend's tournament.

Roy Koenig/Townsquare Media