Tomorrow, at noon on Wednesday, April 16th, the Local’s first ever Kickstarter campaign will end. As I’m writing this 157 people have come together to donate $7,970, in amounts ranging from $1 (thanks Stephen, every penny counts), to $432 (a few of you, and we are speechless with gratitude). If you’re reading this it means you are probably connected to the Local in some way; your band played on our old, occasionally-collapsing stage, you came to one (or a dozen) volunteer days to help build the place, you paid to get into shows when we had ½ a staff and ¼ of a PA system. Whatever your connection to the club, I hope it means something to you. A place to make lifelong friends, a venue to launch a career in the arts, or just an escape from our own suburban wastelands. We’re still at it, still in downtown Flint, and still providing a spot for young people to figure out who they are and where they belong. The best parts about today’s 432? We own the building, so we can’t be kicked out. We’ve added art, fashion, theatre, comedy, film and dance events to the 100+ concerts we still do every year. And it gets better and better all the time.
We passed our initial $2,500 goal in the first twelve hours, our first stretch goal of $3,750 in the first week, and raised $3500 yesterday to blow right past our next stretch goals. More information is available on the site, but in brief the funds are being used to make our concrete box of a building look and sound like a concert venue. Stage curtains, acoustic drop ceiling, upgraded PA gear, LED lights and more will dramatically improve the experience for bands and fans alike. Reaching our Unbelievable Stretch Goal takes care of one additional huge issue. It will cover the cost of repairing, grinding and finishing our concrete floors. They are original from the 30s, a cool red color, and currently generate a ton of dust that damages our sound and lighting gear. After covering that expense any additional funds will go towards a much-needed exterior sign.
Every donation really does count. If you can give a bigger amount, we can use the help. Even a very small donation adds you to the list of people who believe in the power of music to transform; we would love to have 200 or more donors to show our funders the depth of support for our mission. A whole bunch of folks have donated already, including members of Pines, OverDrive, Empty Orchestra, Save Your Generation Records, The Revelry, Braided Veins, Deer Widow, Brown Sugar, Earl Grey and many more. We’re thankful they know what a dingy little punk rock club can mean. If you feel the same way we would very much appreciate your support.
P.S. Since we’re mostly grown-ups now, you should know that your donation is to a 501(c)(3) non-profit and is tax deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law.
P.P.S. Recent donors have added to our band list. Members of The Swellers, May/June, Erwin, Takeout, Death By Bobcat, Army of Juan, Bars of Gold, and Fugazi have stepped up. Pretty cool.
Information about Red Ink, our non-profit organization: www.redinkflint.org
Cool C. S. Mott Foundation (and Steve Hester produced!) video about our reopening in 2012: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7rK0DBAUxU
ABOUT THE FLINT LOCAL 432
The Flint Local 432 is an all-ages, substance free, non-profit music and arts space located in historic Downtown Flint, and a program under Red Ink Flint, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.
The "Local" has played host to thousands of bands since 1985– from mid-80's punk superstars like Black Flag, 7Seconds and ALL, to groundbreaking bands such as Fugazi, Superchunk, and Less Than Jake, we have hosted generations of great music. While seeing bands move from the Local to arena stages is cool, with acts like My Chemical Romance, Coheed & Cambria and Avenged Sevenfold all passing through, we are most proud of the vibrant scene we are part of. Local and Michigan bands like Chiodos, The Swellers, Empty Orchestra, Empire! Empire! (I Was A Lonely Estate), and The Hard Lessons call 432 home, and form a base to bring in current cutting edge touring groups like The Flatliners, RVIVR, and Pet Symmetry, The Wild, The Taxpayers, Luther, Timeshares, Little Big League, and more.
The 432 provides a sustainable venue for local bands to play, and serves as a model for others who want to see a similar space in their own town. All-ages music venues are crucial because young people are often excluded from participating in music, as performers or even as fans, due to age restrictions. We provide a safe and welcoming space for all because we firmly believe that everyone deserves to have access to music.
Up until now we have generally operated on a "bubblegum and duct-tape" kind of budget with our equipment. All-ages shows only make enough money to cover our basic expenses (if that), but it never seems enough to improve the space. This leaves us with the challenge of finding other means to make our permanent home a better place for shows, bands and fans.
If you've been to the Local since we've reopened, or if you're a band who's played our stage, you can attest to the fact that our room is loud. REALLY loud, as you’d expect from what is essentially a big cinder block box. In order to provide a better experience for everyone, our plan is to make the following upgrades to our space and equipment:
- Special sound insulating, fire-retardant drop ceiling tiles, framing, and other materials above the stage and sound board
- Additional power amplifiers, pre-amps and cabling to dramatically upgrade our monitor set-up
- Sound insulating, fire-retardant foam sheets for the back wall
- Theatre curtains behind the stage, back stage and at front of house. This will improve concert sound, as well as make the room more suitable for film, theatre and comedy events
- Replacement of the current stage lighting with high efficiency LEDs, and installation of light controls. This will reduce our monthly operating expenses and improve the overall production capacity of the space
- Any funds above our goal will upgrade microphones, add a fourth monitor, provide for the permanent installation of our projector, and other related improvements.
Not one penny will be spent on rent, insurance, utilities, or the dozens of other expenses that eat away at our bank account every month. We want bands and fans to know that everything they donate will go towards making their nights at the Local sound better.
As a non-profit, all donations are deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law.
Feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the fundraising campaign, Local 432, or Red Ink Flint. Your donations and help in spreading the word about our campaign are be very much appreciated.
Dan Moilanen and Joel Rash
Risks and challenges
Figuring out production is not for amateurs, which is why we are lucky to have so many talented friends. A partial list of the folks helping out includes Shane Kerchen, Ashley Peacock, Mark Hudson, Brian Thom, Chris Everson, Dave Reese and the MSR crew, and more. With their help we'll get the best deals on PA and lights, get it installed correctly, and have a great sounding room.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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