Friday, September 14, 2007

Doing a Cornelius 360...part 2

It's a fade to black for The Factory nightclub, a once downtown hot spot. At post time, we have visually confirmed that this local night haunt has ceased operations, although not from it's management which has not extended any comments on the closure as yet. If we hear from them and perhaps we will, you will be the first to get the update. Unfortunately, the city will be short an entertainment venue but I'm not really suprised. In several previous post and podcasts I have expounded on the health of our local watering holes and their survival in iffy economic times plus compounded by a fickle/finicky market. You don't have to have an ivy league degree from Harvard to know that if the customer base is constantly declining- so goes you revenues, but not those set expenses such as leases, utilities, supplies and TAXES! I've been on the scene for more than 20 years and have seen my share of favorites come and go. Little Rock has had long and winding history with outlets such as The Gar Hole, Drummers, French Quarters, Silver Dollar, Variations, Garbo's, Chaps, Lil's Pub, Sgt.Prestons, 5th Gear, Palladium, The Filling Station, COADS, and Afterdark. Also the iconic Discovery, in all it's incarnations as well as expansions has been apart of the lavender landscape for more than two decades consectively. All of these forunners including today's UBU and Easy Street, have struggled to offer support on all levels to the LGBTQI community meanwhile allowing their owners to gain prospersity. The names have changed but the misson has basically been the same: to provide a zone that allows everyone the freedom to just be themselves in proximity to others whom share the lifestyle. However, the city has been beleaguered with varying circumstances that have always impacted these ventures, ranging from the socio-political climate to the nomadic nature of end users. Let's not forget the all important business accumen or savvy needed to get open, then stay open. I can't even count how many times I've been told by community folks that they prefer Dallas, Houston or Atlanta to going out in Little Rock. I love travel but I make every attempt to place my full support behind the hometown teams as often as possible. I remember back in the day when there was only one game in town and I welcomed the healthy competition. Furthermore, this mix includes the electronic wizardry of the 21st Century which has provided some stiff competition for bars and events overall. We use to go to the bar for the hook up, yet now the meet-up can be as close as the nearest video cam. In the post, "Its all about the Benjamins," again, I raised the issue of the financial muscle in this community and wondered out loud if there was going to be any dialouge concerning it. To this date, I haven't heard a peep or whimper. Of course everything comes to a close and The Factory has played it's part in the natural evolution and history of the local GLBTI community. I'm sending out a high-five and a "Thanks" to Davey and Jassiel (pictured) for their efforts. I wish you well on your next endeavor, you may be down now, but not out of the game. I will close with a tag line I use in my podcasts about local businesses, " if we are not there for them, then perhaps they will stop being there for us..." Think about it family.
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ATwistedThought said...

If true this is very sad news for our community.The Factory was/is a vital part of the big picture if we were ever to actually become a big picture.

John T. said...

We are still a growing community and with that comes growing pains. I will personally miss karaoke on Tuesdays with Jason and the great group of die hard singers that were always there to help you out if you faltered. I hope that the Factory family is doing well and wish them success in all their future endeavors.