Here's a re-post from New Year's Eve last year with some good comments:
Anyone recall a New Year's Eve party at the Capitol Theater in the mid-eighties, maybe 1984 or 1985? There was an icy snowfall that night and everyone streamed out into the street afterwards, sliding all over the place. The son of a prominent Flint politician at the time "accidentally" tackled some sort of beauty pageant winner — Miss Michigan? — in the slush outside the theater. She was wearing a white dress and some kind of white fur coat. She was not happy. It's all a little blurry. I think Mark Sanford and Bill Custack were in attendance. Someone help me out here. Am I imagining all this? I hope it actually happened because it's one of the few times in my life I actually had fun on New Year's Eve, excluding my younger years when I'd excitedly sip chilled Vernor's from a Champagne glass with my mom and the rest of the family.
Those were the BEST parties... BYOB and everyone was there. To this day when I hear "How Soon is Now" I remember watching some Flint Public Library black and white movie that was playing that night of some guy getting hung and remembering his life.
I guess that was the Durant for our day... ;)
I think it's directly behind their house on Crapo, if they still live there. #11, maybe?
And yes, we did see Romantics members rather frequently, for a while, in Detroit. That lead singer (Wally?) was really tiny. I think all the clothes they owned must have been made of leather ...
Those parties were great! The fact that they were BYOB (or keg for that matter) explains alot.
As I remember, I also got to display my 12 beer expert driving skills that night. The ice storm froze, for what seemed like forever (maybe a week), my tire tracks as I searched for the driveway. The view from any second floor window was especially good.
I was in charge of sound, and the DJ duty was rotated among the hosts - I still recall my disasterous turn at the wheels of steel, killing Kirt's favorite song (icicle works i think), while he danced with his gorgeous GF suzanne black, with me cutting to the #2 in the middle of the song when he really was giving me the 'crank it' signal. The music came straight from the record collections of the hosts. I think the final year, Rob McKenzie's band the Iodine raincoats did the gig.
The first year the Capitol was more or less unused for anything in a long while, and the rent was cheap, maybe 400 or 500 for the night. We ran amuck exploring the building ( i recall exploring the remains of a drug store and some bowling alleys???) and working with Troy to lock up places where folks shouldn't go. I think we spent 200 bucks renting amps and cabinets, plus a couple of off-duty cops to work security. I think people took turns working the door and cover was $5 that first year. I think the door was over $2K, which just seemed hilarious, to throw a wicked party, in a giant room, with a monster stereo, all your favorite records, and everyone you know and more, and make a buck on it. Kirt kicked back to just about everyone, even though it was mostly sweat equity and he was the one taking the cash risk. A cool dude.
I must admit that in retrospect, this is a great thing about Flint, there was a great DIY ethos about the place. You knew we were a town that would be passed over by the outside world, so if you wanted fun, you made it. And having a run-down downtown, some cash, intitiative, and not giving a crap about lawyers and liability, made of a hell of a night.
I think year 2, the rent got pricy, we spent more on sound, security, etc. and it was marginally profitable. I still can't recall if there was a year 3 or not. I think folks started finishing college, etc. and it faded away.
I know there eventually was a much larger captol scene in the 89+ era, but with a different set of actors.
SO yes Gordie it really happened, and Rut did have a little scene out front, I don't think it was miss MI, but sequins and slush were involved.
I remember we checked out the view from the roof too... so that must have been the Halloween one as well.
Those were definitely the best new year's eve parties. I think they probably stopped because of liability insurance since so many were drinking...
My band, the Iodine Raincoats did play the second party. I have a great story. Weeks prior to the party I asked a girl out and she said no. Alright, nothing new, but she saw me on stage at the Capitol theater party and came backstage and offered herself to me. I turned her down (What an ass I was.). I told her she had had her chance, and now I had moved on. It was either the coolest thing I've ever done, or the stupidest (I tend to think the latter).
I remember the funnest thing about those parties was exploring the facility, and worrying about the risk. After the party, a bag full of musical equipment was stolen in our loadout. Kirt made a thousand or so, and I lost the same. It was still fun. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We all brought out our boxed & imported vinyl.
In setting up the party, we got the stars in the dome ceiling to light up.