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Won’t you help?

November 4, 2016

Café Racer, Seattle

If you’ve been reading this here blog from the beginning, you should know about Café Racer, located in Seattle’s University District.

I used to spend a lot of time there. So much time, in fact, that owner Kurt Geissel called me “Norm.” (Watch a few episodes of Cheers, if you don’t get the joke)

The Racer has been around for a long time, and has developed a large, loyal following of artists, musicians and neighborhood characters, and is a favorite meetup place for Seattle scooterists. It has become famous for the OBAMA bad art collection and as a venue for continuing series of music performances. It is a real-life Cheers, a place where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.

Sadly, Café Racer became world-famous following a shooting spree in 2012 that left five dead before the gunman committed suicide.

With the help and support of the community, Kurt remodeled and reopened Café Racer. However, it now faces another challenge—a financial one.

While the City of Seattle pays lip service to the idea of supporting small businesses, it does in fact do an excellent job of killing them. In this case, a street repaving project, which like most such projects in Seattle seems to have been going on forever, has made getting to Café Racer difficult. Business is down.

In fact, business is down so much that the continued existence of Café Racer has been placed in jeopardy. Seattle’s ongoing gentrification has destroyed much of the city’s character and quirkiness in a relentless quest to become Anywhere, USA. The Racer is one of the few unique places left standing, but a cash infusion will be needed to keep it in business.

There’s a way you can help: Kurt has created a GoFundMe campaign with a goal of raising $50,000. As I write this, almost $9,000 has been raised, which is a good start. But there’s a ways to go. So, do Kurt a solid and toss a few bucks in the kitty. And share the f**k out this post on social media and message boards.

Because, sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name.

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One Comment
  1. November 14, 2016 9:52 am

    In some cases, municipalities will reimburse businesses for lost revenue, due to construction. If memory serves, Sound Transit has done that; as also the City of Seattle.The amount given isn’t always commiserate with lost revenue; but Kurt should appeal directly to the mayor for assistance. Additionally, people should write the mayor’s office, on Kurt’s behalf: ed.murray@seattle.gov

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