A formerly abandoned century-old building in Wyandotte will be reborn as a new music venue, with a focus on rock and country acts.
Slated to open in March 2023, District 142 is a new venture by local entrepreneurs Julie Law and Joshua Cade, who have experience running local festivals. Live Nation will be the booking partner, and the venue’s capacity will be about 700 people.
As their events company grew, Law and Cade say they decided to look for a permanent space. That’s when Wyandotte Downtown Development Authority director Joe Gruber showed them a vacant building at 142 Maple St. Previously, the two-story, 15,000 square-foot structure was home to bars, night clubs, and a bowling alley.
“When Joe showed us the building, it had been stripped down to the dirt floor, with no power or water, but we knew potential was there to turn it into a much-needed live music and entertainment venue,” Law said in a statement.
The new owners plan to add a digital marquee and box office windows, while the interior has been redesigned with what the owners describe as a “steampunk vibe.” There will be a main floor with a stage, while an upper mezzanine floor will offer tables, chairs, a private bar, and restrooms. The renovations are being done by Rise Above Ventures.
The owners say they plan to host national rock and country artists, as well as local and regional bands, themed events, weddings, and private parties.
Law and Cade have previously partnered for festivals in downtown Wyandotte, including Swiggin’ Pig, Fire & Flannel Fest, Wyandotte Wine Crawl, Detroit River Cocktail Showdown, St. Patrick’s Party & Leprechaun Crawl, and Wyandotte Beer Fest.
Law comes from experience with her company 360 Event Productions, as well as stints as director of marketing and promotions at local rock radio stations like 101 WRIF and 94.7 WCSX. Meanwhile, Cade owns or co-founded a number of local bars and restaurants, including Whiskeys on the Water, Frank’s Pizza, The Iron Gate, and RiverTown Tavern.
“As the owner of several Wyandotte restaurants and bars, I felt the area needed something that would drive traffic to the city year-round,” Cade said in a statement. “District 142 will be that venue — drawing in visitors for concerts as well as providing a space for residents to host weddings, parties and corporate events.”
“This is a tremendously exciting moment for us, and really, all Southeast Michigan and the Metro Detroit music scene,” Gruber said. “The City of Wyandotte and the DDA have long supported Josh and Julie’s events which bring thousands of visitors into Wyandotte annually. Their continued investment in our community helped cement our position as a regional destination and the ‘Downtown of Downriver.’ We’re thrilled for this new venue that will allow even more people to discover all Wyandotte has to offer.”
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