Trackside Blues Caf/ approved for license

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 22, 2005

YORK-The city of York has attracted many tourists in the last year because of its visual arts. Soon, it may be attracting them because of its musical attractions. Work has already begun on a new attraction owned by Marilyn D. Wade and Willie Lake called the Trackside Blues Caf/. The caf/ will be located in the downtown area near the art galleries and Lake said the name describes exactly what it will be.

“It is going to be a Blues Caf/,” Lake said. “It is going to be a sit down blues caf/. We have put a lot of money into the facility and we plan to make it a private facility for 30 and above.”

The caf/ is designed to be a laid back environment where adults can enjoy each other’s company and a night of the blues. Lake said they want their caf/ to be an asset to the community, not a liability.

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“Our purpose is to avoid problems,” Lake said. “I do not like problems. As a matter of fact, we are doing everything we can to avoid them. We are not trying to be an exclusive club, but we feel we have got to have guidelines to make sure we do not have any problems.”

Though the caf/ will not open for a while it has already gotten attention from out of town. Lake said he attended a conference last weekend and ran the idea past some of the people he met there. He said the support he received was flattering.

“I had an opportunity to go to a Your Town Workshop this weekend and I was amazed at some of the things people had to say about the revitalization of York,” Lake said. “I mentioned it to some of the people there and they said to let them know when it opens and they will be there. I probably gave out 15 different cards to people from Birmingham, Grove Hill and other places.”

Lake said he left York years ago and came back to find it had changed for the better. He said he wants his caf/ to aide in this change and launch more businesses around town.

“We see this as a great opportunity to market York,” Lake said. “We also have other plans to go in addition to the Trackside Caf/. It is our goal to be the best citizens and business owners we can be. I lived in York, I love York. I moved away, but I had the opportunity to come back and I think this is something the city can really use.”

The hope is that a blues caf/ will provide something for everyone. Lake said they have no specific target audience. They just want everyone to come in and have a good time.

“We are going to try to draw everyone,” Lake said. “Not just one race. We want this to be a place everyone can enjoy.”

York Mayor Carolyn Mitchell Gosa and the rest of the council welcomed Lake’s idea. Gosa said they were grateful he had chosen to come home to launch his new business.

“We would like to thank Mr. Lake for choosing York as his site,” Gosa said. “We know there is a lot of work to be done and we appreciate you locating here.”

A target date for the opening of the club is still in the works.