My husband and I started a theater group in 2008 in the basement of our church. We decided to start because there were just not enough opportunities for kids to do theater and so bob and I asked our minister and he said that it would be fine. So we started it and it grew and grew and grew! If you build it they will come. There was such an interest, and there were a great deal of people at the church who supported us and helped us. There was some resistance, but it was so popular that it still kept growing. It grew so much we decided to take it out of the church, because it’s a church not a theater. We bought a building on Grand and we rent that space to other theater groups for rehearsals, and yoga workshops or we rent it to dance groups. There are also some comedy groups that hold rehearsals there some times. It is so beautiful how it has grown.
“My husband has great dreams, he starts these ideas and I’m always kind of resistant…”
Now were are working on a jazz club! My husband has great dreams, it was his idea for the club. I’m always kind of resistant- like let’s slow down and take a break. It’s funny because he has all these wonderful dreams and he wants to run forward, and I’m the sensible one who is like wait, let’s not rush into things, but then I’ll get on board and he’ll be like I don’t want to do this anymore! Then I have to be the one who is like, shut the fuck up- you can’t back out now. So back to the jazz club- he wanted to invest in some property downtown before it was unaffordable because downtown is changing so much. We found this building and we were actually the last small people to buy a building downtown because Kum and Go and this other organization bought all the stuff around us and are going to start developing things. So we got it in the nick of time.
We wanted it to be a restaurant slash live music place at first. And during that time we met Max Welman and realized what a need there is for a dedicated jazz club here in Des Moines. So Max sold us on the idea of a Jazz club, but we wanted it to be higher end, classy, not like cheap drinks and stumble down drunks. In the process of figuring out exactly what we wanted to do, we realized how many regulations and other requirements for running a restaurant and we were like fuck it, people can go out to eat and then come here.