Culture Shifts: Mishawaka's New Owners and the "Beautification" of East 13th

December 17 2010, 12:00 PM

The Mishawaka amphitheater and restaurant in the Poudre Canyon outside of Fort Collins has been purchased for an undisclosed price by Dani Grant, a popular local arts and culture backer, who enlisted the help of other unnamed sources to buy the popular outdoor music venue. Former owner Robin Jones, a longtime venue proprietor and legendary local character, put the Mish up for sale after being arrested for allegedly growing and distributing marijuana illegally from the venue and his home, according to the Fort Collins Coloradoan.

Mishawaka has hosted a range of top-tier musicians over the years, from Joan Baez and 10,000 Maniacs to De La Soul and BassNectar, as well as a spectrum of well-known local acts like DeVotchKa and Pretty Lights. But the outlet had in recent years seen controversy, as federal officials sought to buy it and create a boat launch for the Poudre River. Jones, whose stepson made local and international headlines back in 2001 for his part in what appeared to be a school-shooting plot inspired by Columbine, says he's excited to see the music continue.

Meanwhile, Denver's East 13th Avenue between Washington and Pearl streets has long been a hub for the counterculture—punks, goths, and others—but is welcoming some new blood, including the Beauty Bar, which moved into the long-vacant Snake Pit space over the summer, and a decent-sounding breakfast and lunch joint, Jelly, which will open in the Laundromat space on New Year's Day, reports The Denver Post. "We love the Beauty Bar, and we think the idea of a breakfast place down there will be great for everybody," says Dave Wilkins, who has worked at Wax Trax music, the strip's centerpiece, for three decades. "We want this to be a hub of alternative culture, but if people aren't coming down here to shop and eat, then you start to worry about its future."