Reported in The Southern Illinoisan: Fred's Dance Barn closing, Dec. 9: Owner Barrett Rochman said "negative media attention following a highly publicized shooting near Fred's Dance Barn property in January was a major factor in a steep attendance decline that ultimately led to the decision to close," reports Ashley Wiehle.
As many know, Barrett is a prominent figure in the Carbondale community. Some might say "legendary." Back in the 60's he was known as "Mr Sandwich." He was reported to be the "Mr. X" who was going to save the Varsity Theater a few years ago. He's also a major benefactor of amateur softball. But his biggest contribution to the region is probably the Blue Sky Vineyard, the crowning jewel in the string of fine Southern Illinois wineries.
My guess is that if Barrett didn't have his hands full with this venture, he might have found a way to capitalize of the shooting in Fred's parking lot. . . . 300 yards from the building, he points out. Er rather, to minimize the damage through positive PR, and not lose any business.
But Fred's is not dead yet, not for two more weeks. Until then, the club will be open every night, and "there will be special events and giveaways," Rochman said.
Dosey dough, Bloggee.