THE DOUBLE TROUBLE guys–the ones who saved the Ball Drop celebration on New Years Eve–have come up with something new: a big time, blow-out St. Patricks Day street party this year.
Mark it on your calendar. Friday, March 17th. All afternoon, evening, and night.
Yep, they’ll be shutting down a good part of Washington Street, throwing up a huge tent, installing a bar outside, serving food, and featuring live music.
Holy cow. We’re becoming Partytown USA.
By the way, Digs, Double Trouble’s newly acquired gastropub (formerly the Doghouse), reopens March 1, give or take a day or two.
The bar is being remodeled–and reconfigured–to better accommodate live performances. They’re also coming up with a new, upgraded menu. Not just bar food, anymore.
WELL, THAT WAS easy.
After stops and starts and delays and frustrations, the Delft Bistro has its liquor license.
The Liquor Control Commission finally approved it in Lansing on Tuesday while owner Tom Vear stood by, eagerly waiting for the official document.
You wouldn’t blame Vear and his wife and co-owner Jen Ray for their impatience (and maybe a muttered curse word or two). They opened more than two weeks ago with the full expectation that the license was a done deal.
Nope. Delay after delay.
Which meant they were opening Marquette’s newest eating and drinking establishment…without any drinking. Unless it was water or coffee or some similar beverage.
Oh well. What’s done is done.
They served wine and beer for the first time last night (Tuesday). Mixed drinks will be added in the next few days.
Fortunately for the Bistro, reviews on the food, during this Prohibition period, have mostly been sensational.
YA GOTTA LIKE this.
The founding of the Marquette Brewing Cooperative.
A group of beer-lovers has started a membership campaign to establish a tap room and microbrewery in south Marquette. Specifically in a vacant commercial building at 501 Lake Street, across from the BLP power plant.
But it’ll be different from a regular microbrewery. It’ll be owned by all members of the co-op who’ll pay $99 for a lifetime membership, and in return, will get 50 cents off every beer they drink, and possibly a share of the profits in the future.
The group’s been meeting for two years and finally locked in the location–it’s owned by one of the directors–a few weeks ago when they started the membership campaign. They have 40 signed up so far, with more signing on every week. They’ll also be offering preferred stock to bring in larger chunks of money
A pipe dream? Maybe. They’ll need to raise enough cash to get the attention of a lending institution, and then they’ll have to pay rent on the building, remodel it, buy the equipment, get a license, and pay the staff. A tall task.
What about other brewing cooperatives nationwide? There aren’t many. A dozen at most, probably less.
Anticipated opening date? No, let’s call it the hoped-for opening date. Summer of 2018.
DISAPPOINTING NEWS FOR local outdoorsmen and women.
The Reuters news agency, which is usually very reliable, is reporting that Gander Mountain is preparing to file for bankruptcy as early as this month.
A local store manager can’t comment about it. Corporate folks have nothing to say, either.
Why the problems? The report speculates that it’s stiff competition from Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s, as well as Gander Mountain’s recent aggressive expansion that apparently didn’t go as well as expected.
The chain operates about 160 stores, almost 60 of which have been added since 2012.
The Gander Mountain store on US 41, of course, remains open and hopes are high that it’ll stay that way.
IT APPEARS THAT the Dan Adamini controversy has finally died down.
Quick background: Adamini, a Marquette County GOP official, wrote some social media posts a couple of weeks back seeming to suggest that unlawful protests in the streets could be ended if police shot a protester or two. Adamini subsequently claimed his posts were misinterpreted.
Still, the damage was done. The posts went national.
Adamini estimates he received maybe 200 negative letters and post cards, and 200-300 negative emails. Some of them were nasty, some were threats.
But they’ve stopped, thankfully.
He expects to continue in GOP politics, despite his resignation, and as for his job, he says, “My return to work will depend on whether or not I can be an asset to my company rather than a distraction.”
The takeaway from this sad, unsavory episode? Words matter, especially in this era of social media and polarized politics.
MORE GOOD NEWS for downtown.
Total prize money for Marquette’s SmartPrize competition has now risen to more than $35,000, up from $20,000 last year.
Travel Marquette says businesses and organizations, big and small, have stepped up with cash and support for the 10 day event which will be spread throughout downtown.
It starts March 31st.
The event drew 23 entrepreneurs last year. Looks like it’ll be more like 35-40 jumping in this year. Travel Marquette is marketing the contest in Detroit and Green Bay, as well as all over the U.P. It was also featured in Delta Sky magazine.
SmartPrize, of course, is open to any entrepreneur with an idea for a new business or a product.
We got the perfect idea! How about a brewing cooperative?
You got news? Email me at briancabell@gmail.