What's up in Downtown Duluth

Downtown Live Rocked!

April 27, 2016

Live from downtown, it's Wednesday night!  Or, rather, it was.  Last Wednesday, business people from around Duluth trickled into the Zeitgeist Arts for a laid-back evening at Downtown Live courtesy of the Greater Downtown Council.

Downtown Live events are a unique, educational, and oftentimes humorous community experience.  Each event is emceed by Duluthian Steve Greenfield of Greenfield Communications, who interviews local members of the business and arts communities in the style of a late-night talk show panel.

Greenfield set a lively, casual tone for the night.  So casual, in fact, that even the audience was welcome to get some questions in.  Our guests were Bob Monahan, owner of the Red Herring and Walt “Dizzo” Raschick, the director of Homegrown Music Festival.

Since both Monahan and Raschick have done great things for local music, music talk dominated much of the evening.

Raschick discussed his time as the director of Homegrown Music Festival, and his upcoming resignation.  When asked why he was stepping down, Raschick cited his five years as director and explained that Homegrown is a community effort, and as such, needs fresh perspectives and ideas to continue its growth.

Monahan, who founded one of Duluth’s most prolific labels, Chaperone Records, also spoke about his work in the music community.  His experience with the area’s musicians allowed for detailed insight into what it takes to produce a local album, including the vinyl-pressing process, creating CDs, and creating cover art for the finished product.

Although our guests, by and large, are contributors to the music scene, their visions for the city are much broader.

Monahan would like to continue to work towards growing the reach of the tourism industry from Canal Park to the HART District in downtown (and beyond.)  Continuing from there, Raschick noted that the Homegrown Music Festival makes an effort to spread tourism throughout Duluth by exposing tourists to venues across the city.

Though much of the evening was evocative of an episode of The Late Show, the entire event resonated as a casual conversation among friends who shared a common passion:  Duluth.

“I thought I would only be here for school,” Raschick reflected on his first years in the city, “but I just couldn’t find a reason to leave.”

If you love Duluth, you may find yourself right at home at our next Downtown Live event on October 19th featuring Citon Computer Corp’s founders & owners Steven Dastoor and Sean Dean.  All are invited and the event is free!

Straight from Downtown Duluth,

Harley Roach

duluth street light