HomeWorld NewsClosed Wilmington music venue The Place searches for new home – StarNewsOnline.com
Closed Wilmington music venue The Place searches for new home – StarNewsOnline.com
August 28, 2023
Despite closing in mid-July, a popular Wilmington music venue is seeking to maintain momentum and to find a new physical space for concerts by local and touring acts.
Since it began hosting shows in late 2022, The Place, which was located in the Cargo District, regularly packed in crowds of 100 or more mostly young music fans to see such Wilmington rock bands as Ridgewood, Doggy Daycare and Cancel.
Many of those bands would find a home at The Place. “Once it opened up, it became my main spot to go,” he said. “The Place stood out.”
Since The Place closed, McAdams has launched something he calls The New Places Project. One of the first orders of business was to crowdfund $6,000 to purchase the audio equipment used at The Place.
“I thought we could hit (the fundraising goal),” he said. “The fact that we were able to do it in two and a half days, it was very overwhelming. It was like, ‘All right, I guess we’re doing this.’”
McAdams has also been promoting shows by bands that regularly played The Place at spots including The Opera Room downtown, Reggie’s 42nd Street Tavern in midtown and even the Dead Crow Comedy Room on North Third Street, which is best known for hosting touring stand-up comedians.
McAdams said he finds inspiration in the lore of the Dead Crow, which started as Nutt Street Comedy Room in the late 2000s in the basement of the old Soapbox Laundro-Lounge music venue on Front Street. When the Soapbox closed in 2013, Nutt Street reinvented itself as the Dead Crow Comedy Room next door in a space that’s now called UnderFront. During the pandemic, Dead Crow closed, relocated and expanded into its current spot on North Third Street.
“I’ve looked up to those guys for a while,” McAdams said of Dead Crow, adding that he’d like to see The Place follow a similar trajectory to the comedy club, staying scrappy and relevant until he can find a permanent home. He’s been promoting about a show a week at various venues over the past six weeks, which is “not quite where I want it to be,” McAdams said.
Still, at least one thing hasn’t changed from the days when The Place was rocking, said Mendoza, the photographer, who has continued to document shows: “It’s still fun.”
McAdams has been looking at new locations, and said he’s “found a location downtown that would be optimal.”
The focus would stay on local bands, but if he can push the capacity to 300 or more, McAdams said, he could bring in more touring bands. To make his vision happen, he’s been talking to several potential investors.
“I am so poor, and all my friends are artists,” McAdams said. “We all need supporters and investors.”
A top priority, however, is that “I want to make sure that any money we take, it’s from someone who matches our values.”
McAdams said he sees The Place less as a venue that helped grow a scene as one that harnessed the energy that was already out there and helped focus creative endeavors of various kinds, from music and art to photography.
In early October, he plans a “town hall” of sorts to thank the investors who helped secure The Place’s audio equipment but also to “start hearing what people have to say,” McAdams said. “What they would want out of a ‘perfect’ spot. What they like about live venues here, what they don’t like.”