New 400 Block helps local businesses - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

New 400 Block helps local businesses

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WAUSAU (WAOW) -- After months of construction, the 400 Block is now back up and running and local store owners say business is picking up. For restaurant owner, Michael Yao, what used to be a not so pleasant view -

"During the construction, it kind of dampened the mood a little bit," said Yao's Grand Dragon owner, Michael Yao.

- is now one of the bests seats in the house.

Yao's Grand Dragon Restaurant sits right along Third Street across from the Square at the 400 Block. He said now that construction is complete, business is back up to speed and has jumped at least 30 percent.

"It's been families, it's been tourists, a lot of out of town people come here for the special events," said Yao.

The Combs family is just one example of people visiting Downtown Wausau from all over North Central Wisconsin. They said they've come to the area for the last six years to check out Chalk Fest, and after seeing the new 400 Block, they plan to visit more often.

"It's definitely a lot nicer, with the new band stand. We can't wait to come down and check out some new bands," said Robert Combs.

The Combs say along with all of the shows and events, the best part is it doesn't cost them a dime. Michael Yao said in addition to the new square, there's also new outdoor seating at his restaurant so people can sit back, relax, and enjoy the free entertainment.

"My goal is to, you know, expand a little bit. I've got outdoor seating now, and I have the grills outside for the Wednesday concerts, so yea, it's all up and up," said Yao.

He said he hopes the outdoor entertainment continues, so more people head downtown and support local businesses.

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