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'Here come The Rooster': 100-year-old Gastonia building to become music and entertainment venue



(QUEEN CITY NEWS) — It might not look like much now, but in a few months, a 100-year-old building in downtown Gastonia will become the city’s first indoor music and entertainment venue.

Michael Carpenter decided to open The Rooster when he became tired of travelling to Charlotte whenever he wanted to see a concert or show.

“I hope this will be a home for the arts. Not just musicians, but artists of all types: comedians, stand-up. We’d like to get some stage plays in. I’ve even been in contact with someone about bringing in an improv group,” he said.

Local business owners say it’s exactly the type of thing budding downtown Gastonia needs. The city has been trying to revitalize its downtown corridor for years.

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“We are in the very serious process of rebuilding downtown Gastonia and having live music will be a huge asst to the types of community that we can build and draw in downtown Gastonia,” said nearby Esquire Hotel manager Joy Dixon.

The idea started back in 2015. Restaurants and shops have been filling downtown Gastonia’s empty storefronts, but the locals say something was missing: entertainment.

“Just seeing a need for entertainment. The ball field’s great, but not everyone’s into sports,” said Carpenter.

Carpenter is designing the space for the community it serves. He says the venue’s name draws inspiration from one of his favorite Alice in Chains songs.

“It’s also a blue-collar story about a blue-collar family. It just seemed to fit this community,” said Carpenter.

Construction started at the beginning of April and Carpenter’s general contractor is predicting it to be finished in August.

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