When starting this blog one of my goals was to share insight into running a music venue. Unfortunately it seems that not something that will be happening. Two weeks ago we closed the doors of The Crux for the last time. A number of things led up to this event.
1. The Crux since its inception has been located at 421 Broadway. This arrangement was an agreement with Believer's Church of Hannibal. Believer's is church plant in Hannibal that Courtney and I have been a part of since last May. We starting going to Believer's before it official launch in August 07. Before August we met in 421 Broadway, then we started meeting at the YMCA. 421 Broadway, along with 423 and a house on 5th street were a donation to Believer's Church to get started. After the move one night we were loading some sound equipment back into The Crux (The building was named The Crux before the venue ever started.) when some young men stopped and asked if there was a concert going on. This sparked conversation, and we told Sam (the pastor) how Courtney and I wanted to run an all-ages music venue. Sam thought it was a good idea, and by October we had our first show.
2. We continued to run The Crux this way. Believer's church (BC) allowed us to use their building free of charge. We were only responsible for covering the monthly utility bill. It was officially run as a ministry of BC. This allowed us to work under BC's nonprofit umbrella, which saved us on a lot of fees and taxes.
3. The spring brought a new trouble to the equation as well. The roof began leaking, badly. We had a leak on 423 from the beginning, but once 421 began leaking it was the beginning of the end. I told Sam and hoped to get the roof fixed. He was afraid of the liability of a rapidly deteriorating building, and began looking for options to move.
4. We searched many locations and could not find a satisfactory location. We needed a location which was safe and accessible, large enough for our growing crowd (421 Broadway had a max capacity of 49), and was cheap enough to be possible on our budget.
5. At the same time as this process I graduated college, finished substitute teaching, and began looking for a full-time job. When I let Sam know that I was considering accepting a position which would have me move away from the area, the search for a new building came to a halt. He was sure that there was no one who was a part of BC who could fulfill the duties I had at The Crux with the same level of competence. I talked with Stephen Sprague, Jonas Mackey, and Rob from Eolia. When I went to talk to Rob he told me of his plans to open the Threshing Floor. Stephen was up for the challenge, but the leadership at BC felt he could not adequately take the responsibility at the same time as being a college freshman. I talked to Jonas about the possibility of my moving, and the need for someone to take over if I get the position, and the need for a new building. Jonas eventually decide to take the responsibility, trying to get an outside individual to get behind the idea and provide a location and monetary backing.
6. BC decided to give away the building to get under the liability it posed. This meant we had to be out of the building by July 23rd. I continued the search to secure a new building. I had still not received a job offer and was trying to get a job at HLG so I could stay in the area and continue to run The Crux in a new location.
7. I heard back from Honey Rock, and they asked Courtney and I both to come work for them starting September 8th. We knew if we took the job The Crux could very likely cease to exist, but for us it was the best move. I had been unemployed since May, and the position at Honey Rock will allow me to begin Graduate work towards a masters degree while working with teens in a camp setting.
8. Since the acceptance of the position, I have been working with Jonas Mackey to prepare him to take over The Crux, he submitted a proposal, but has been asked to submit a more detailed proposal. After the last show at 421 Broadway, I gave him everything we had sound system, lights, furniture, etc. Jonas will continue to work on the plan. Hopefully the backing will come, and The Crux will become much more than it ever was when I ran it.
Anyway, I was blessed greatly through the year I poured into The Crux. I met many great teenagers who shared a passion for music. We had a lot of great shows, and hopefully we provided a safe place for teens to enjoy music without the negative influences. My desire was to share the love of Christ to all who entered our doors, without preaching. I never wanted The Crux to become a Christian music venue. I wanted to be an all-ages music venue that was positive. Yet I wish I could have shared the hope that lies within Christ to the teens more. Hopefully we've laid a foundation on which others can build.