Allow or cultivate a night life downtown. I just came from visiting a small town in California that has a really cool night life in the downtown area. Bars, restaurants, live bands, but quality, not quantity.
Downtown Mesa has been growing its nightlife over the last few years with several great venues for arts, entertainment and live music. The Mesa Arts Center and its five theaters schedule a plethora of arts and entertainment throughout the year. The Nile Theater and Underground have live music weekly featuring both regional and national acts. Many of the clubs and restaurants feature live bands, DJ’s and open mic nights – Monsterland Bar and Grill, De la Cruz Bistro, Lo-Fi Coffee and Kirks Sports Grill to name a few. Live music is a staple at all the downtown events including the monthly series Motorcycles on Main and 2nd Friday Out. This Saturday’s Mesa Rocks Block Party features six bands featuring national reggae recording artists IRATION.
For schedules of Downtown entertainment visit these sites:
chris macias commented
The problem is how much red tape is the city going to put potential microbrewers or other establishments that sell alcohol through? Mesa has been talking about "revitalizing" downtown for decades but haven't embraced the night crowd that bring revenue. Downtown Chandler was able to re-invent nightlife somehow, they should be the blueprint to kickstart hanging out downtown. Mesa needs to openly state "We're not the old, tired, cranky Mesa that your used to complain about change, people drinking and having a good time. We want to work with you and not hassle you if you want to open up downtown". Sushi, microbrew, dare I say nightclubs with high volume music and other establishments that cater to the 20-45 crowd which should be Mesa's target group with disposable income.
Patrick Brennan commented
I agree with Lance. No one has tried capitalizing on the popularity of microbreweries by becoming the brewery capitol of AZ.
A microbrewery & restaurant would be an excellent attraction.
They have been trying with the 2nd Friday events and multiple other efforts. Thanks Mesa for doing this.
Mary Ann commented
I just came from downtown Tempe on a crazy St. Patrick's Day night. When I returned to downtown Mesa, it was quiet and lovely. We need to capitalize on the pleasant atmosphere that has always been Mesa with family events that take advantage of the wide streets and small town feel of the original square mile in downtown. No one is going to party in downtown Mesa when Mill Avenue is so close by.
I agree that people do need to visit downtown once in awhile to see what is open. Problem is that many times you can't tell what is open and what isn't. Bring back some flare or lighting to highlight places that are open. Why not leave decorative lights on year round? People are attracted to shiny things... City needs to assist these businesses in marketing. Cities provide large businesses with tax breaks or other incentives; how about providing incentives to 'Entertainment' oriented businesses with marketing assistance. If Mesa sells downtown as a destination and has the businesses to back it up; not only do the current festivities become more attractive, but sponsorships may happen more frequently that can assist in paying for these events.
I think that it is not just a matter of adding businesses. Look at the draw that events in Tempe have. The marathons, the concerts, and things like festivals, etc. I think that this has been very effective for Tempe, drawing residents from around the Valley, not sut ASU students. Mesa should really entertain more events like the AZ Celebration of Freedom in order for people to see for themselves what Mesa has to offer.
Mike Kliem commented
Smaller venues are an answer.. Like in some european countries. They do'nt have the same alcohol or violence issues..
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In order for clubs, bars and any night life to flourish Downtown, Mesa residents need to frequent the businesses that take the initial risk. It is not easy to be a pioneer, it's not cheap ether. So if we want this to happen, we need to support the pioneers. De la Cruz Bistro (NW corner of Main and Center) is one of those pioneers. They are open late on most nights and have live music, inside and outside, at least 3 times a week. If we want others to follow in their footsteps, they need to see that De la Cruz is having success doing it. The best and easiest way to do that is for us to tell our friends that there are things going on down there and help make them successful.
I think the city is doing their job of being friendly to new businesses and letting everyone know that Downtown is open for business, even at night!
City can clean up the environment and mandate rules for property upkeeps and to meet standards.. if business fronts are not kept up, you will see deterioration to abandonment.
David Crummey commented
I think we all agree that we want Downtown to be wonderful, but what action(s) can the city take to make this happen?
Agreed downtown needs more clubs bars and live bands...