Sometimes the third time isn’t the charm.
Tacoma club owner Chris Wallis’ new music venue, Rhythm & Brews, went dark on Nov. 20, less than two months after its official grand opening. And it appeared to be the third short lived venue to pass through his space, at 733 Market St., since he opened the South Sound Garage there in 2007. (Wallis leased the space to the owners of Club Juno, a dance club, the following year.)
But today Wallis insisted the closure is temporary. “We’re definitely reopening,” he said, explaining that he and his girlfriend, the venue’s general manager, were going on vacation with plans to have the club back up and running around Jan. 15.
“We might take a little longer, we might take a little less,” he said.
However, turnout has been hit or miss so far at Rhythm & Brews. Booking agent Gary Grape – who is also president of the South Sound Blues Association – estimated a drawing of 15 to 20 patrons on a typical Saturday night. And more than anything blamed one thing.
“It’s a bad location and it’s all location,” Grape said. “I’ve lived in Tacoma all my life, for 63 years, and that area of Market Street – forget it.”
Part of the problem, he said, was the lack of foot traffic and parking on that block, the latter made worse when any of Broadway Center’s venues have a show going on around the corner.
“When you get a couple of 65-year-old ladies who wanna come down and do some dancin’ and they’ve gotta park two blocks away they’re not comin’,” Grape said.