Entertainment

New owners plan live music at Park Street nightclubs

By

September 27, 2013

A section of Park Street better known for miniskirts and booming Top 40 music is getting a mature makeover likely to change its tune.

Grandview Heights-based Woodlands Productions yesterday bought three Arena District nightlife spots — Park Street Patio, Park Street Saloon and The Social — with the intent to shift focus of the collective 20,000 square feet toward live music multiple nights a week.

“We’re about good, quality entertainment,” said managing partner Jimmy Woodland. “We’re excited to bring our brand to the street.”

The rebranding will go into effect on Oct. 4.

Better known now for thumping electronic fare, the Park Street clubs will instead be booked with bands “across all genres,” said Woodland — whose existing Grandview-area venues Woodlands Tavern and Woodlands Backyard play host to frequent entertainment tied most often to folk and roots-rock performers.

The purchase was made from Columbus nightlife developer Chris Corso, whose CGS Group conceived and managed the cluster known as the Park Street Complex.

Park Street Cantina, another nearby Corso outpost, was not part of the acquisition.

Edward Hastie, a Grandview lawyer and Woodland’s business partner, said the sale came “ organically” from discussions this summer with Corso, whom Hastie has known for years.

Corso did not return calls yesterday.

Job offers will be extended to all of the clubs’ 150 existing employees.

Operating hours, too, will expand.

The bars — all of them at present are open only Thursday through Saturday evenings starting at 7 — each will feature the Woodlands happy hour with $2 drafts and well drinks.

Mikey’s Late Night Slice will operate an outpost from a shared on-site kitchen and also establish a pizza cart or food truck out front.

Such details are similar to the laid-back hangout vibe of other Woodlands joints.

With the new clubs’ names and interiors set to change at some point, the takeover marks a curious change for the dressed-up, sometimes-rowdy Park Street.

Will dance nights be replaced by mellow open-mics?

Not entirely.

“There’s a lot of room for growth with the professional crowd, especially earlier in the night,” Hastie said. “The crowd may get older for the live music. At midnight on the patio, you’re going to be able to come dance.”

Added Woodland: “I don’t think we’re totally going to dismiss what’s been going on. We have plenty of room to bring what we want.”

kjoy@dispatch.com

@kevjoy