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View Full Version : Viking Bar going out of business?


David
07-31-2006, 07:33 PM
The closing words of the City Pages 2003 "Best Blues Bar" (http://www.citypages.com/bestof2003/sexdrugsrocknroll/bestof2091.asp) entry say: "Tell celebrated Georgia ethnomusicologist, field recordist, and author George Mitchell you're from Minneapolis, and chances are he'll reply with: "Is the Viking still open?" Then you can give him the good news."

Looks like the good news has turned to bad, according to an email that came to me tonight from Josh Wenck of the Get Up Johns regarding cancellation of a gig they had scheduled there for Wednesday, August 2nd:

"The Viking Bar is going out of business on Tuesday, August 1st at 2am," he said. "Our show that was scheduled at the Viking for Wednesday has been cancelled. Please come out and see us this Saturday night at the 331 Club in NE Mpls instead."

Time to update the calendar.

David
07-31-2006, 07:40 PM
Riemenschneider has more details here:

http://www.startribune.com/457/story/586583.html

Done in by the smoking ban, the owners say. Hmmm.

rachac
08-01-2006, 12:43 PM
Not sure if I am totally bummed about this one. On one hand, it is a West Bank landmark, and you never want to see a family's business go under. On the other hand, looking at how nice the Nomad is compared to how the Five Corners was at the end, you wonder if something similar could be done with the Viking space.

Staciaann
08-01-2006, 01:31 PM
Yeah - I don't know about the smoking ban thing... I always feel like that's a cop out excuse. The demise of any institution stinks though. Hopefully the property will be turned into something great.

solace
08-01-2006, 01:43 PM
i tend to agree...

any business that relies on a relatively small minority % of the population (ie: smokers) for their main source of income...

that'd be sorta like me owning a record store and having to stop carrying Jazz records due to a supplier shortage or whatever, then close down and blame the lack of income as a result of the few Jazz freaks no longer shopping there.

rachac
08-01-2006, 02:48 PM
I don't know -- there seem to be a lot more smokers in bars than the general population. The whole smokin' and drinkin' thing, you know. And I think the smoking ban is a cop out for some -- it ain't like a bunch of people are driving up to Fridley to drink because they can smoke. Although maybe many of the Fridley folks AREN'T going to Minneapolis because of it.

I would guess for the Viking clientele, they decided to sit on their own damned porch and smoke and drink their own beer, rather than walking a couple of blocks and not being able to smoke. It will be interesting to see what happens. It was an OK place and all (especially for Happy Hour), but I think it would take some impressive rennovation to make it a destination kind of place.

solace
08-01-2006, 04:14 PM
no i agree that non-smokers tend to smoke at bars, but those aren't the types who a bar should be worried about losing to a smoking ban imo, and if they are the ones who are supposedly causing a loss of income, well then they're not very loyal customers in the first place IMO.

as someone who was diagnosed with Asthma just in the last 2 years, more than likely as a result of my time spent in smokey bars for the most part (considering in high school i ran a sub 4 1/2 minute mile...), i guess i don't feel too bad...

Staciaann
08-01-2006, 05:29 PM
yeah - In a way I would be happy if they did the all-state smoking ban. I have nothing against smokers, but then at least bar owners couldn't crab so much about it. Actually in St. Paul's local paper there was a lame editorial a few months ago from the owner of Fabulous Fern's about how banning smoking in the bar will actually increase violence on the streets because more people are outside smoking. uhhh... what? Plus, I like not stinking when I come home! :D

Pat
08-01-2006, 06:44 PM
yeah - In a way I would be happy if they did the all-state smoking ban. I have nothing against smokers, but then at least bar owners couldn't crab so much about it. Actually in St. Paul's local paper there was a lame editorial a few months ago from the owner of Fabulous Fern's about how banning smoking in the bar will actually increase violence on the streets because more people are outside smoking. uhhh... what? Plus, I like not stinking when I come home! :D


I AM a smoker, and even I like that I don't smell when I come home. I do a little, of course, but not like I used to.