Gone But Not Forgotten: Top Venues We Miss

As we all prepare to say goodbye to the Modified Arts as we have come to know it and wait for downtown to be ovah, we can't help but think of all the other amazing venues we have loved and lost in the Valley. Whether they were small and seedy or big with a bangin' sound system, there were several venues that housed some uber nostalgic moments for us as desert rats. Here's our tribute to those places that rocked us til they shut their doors for good.

The Web Theatre

What it was: A fun place to go to a ska show, for sure. Web was primly located right off Van Buren and 6th Street. The place really had great sound and acoustics, and we can remember skanking the night away there on a few occasions.

What it is: The venue is now a stately medical school building for the University of Arizona's Phoenix campus. Sure, it's pretty, but we miss the jams.

Most Nostalgic Moment: We've heard a story about the singer from a popular local indie band being accosted by Juggalos in the early 2000s while trying to get home after school. We won't name names but, trust us, it's funny to imagine.

The Nile

What it was: The only cool thing Mesa ever had. Seriously, once The Nile left Main Street, there was pretty much no reason to go there anymore. Way to shoot yourself in the foot, Downtown Mesa. The Nile was a great breeding ground for early indie kids in training.

What it is: A church. It's actually kind of creepy to go back and visit it now.

Most Nostalgic Moment: Andrew McMahon from Something Corporate trying to lug his stand-up piano into The Nile basement.

Mason Jar

What it was: A piece of the Arizona music scene's history. It's little, it's dingy, and it was the perfect place for rock'n'roll.

What it is: A quaint little gay bar called Velocity 2303. There's a sign out front that warns the bar will call the police if people are caught using or dealing drugs on the premises.

Most Nostalgic Moment: Guns N' Roses and Nirvana played there, and, okay maybe we weren't there for it, but c'mon. That's just cool.

Nita's Hideaway

What it was: First it was one place, then it was another, and then it was nowhere. Nita's hosted a lot of great shows in it's time, and those booths were dynamite for sitting around and listening to bands you didn't really come to see.

What it is: A depressing vacant lot. The venue got closed because people in the nearby neighborhood said drunks were stumbling from Nita's to pee on their yards. Grow up.

Most Nostalgic Moment: The Format covered "The Ballad of John and Yoko" at the Edge's Christmas show in 2003.

Minder Binder's

What it was: A big ol' barn with music and food inside. The music wasn't that great, the food wasn't that great, but we had a good time there none the less.

What it is: A big ol' empty barn sitting on McClintock and University in Tempe. Can someone please do something with this building? Maybe a haunted house?

Most Nostalgic Moment: We think most of the nostalgia from Minder Binder's stems from alcohol consumption...


What it was: A creepy little venue straddling the Tempe-Scottsdale border.

What it is: It will soon be Club 910, a go-go bar/venue, and also there will be booze. Maybe this could fill the void for those who are missing Last Exit.

Most Nostalgic Moment: Right before Boston's closed there was a packed show with Guttermouth.

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Heather Hoch is a music, food, and arts writer based in Tucson. She enjoys soup, scotch, Electric Light Orchestra, and walking her dog, Frodo.
Contact: Heather Hoch