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This place was HOT

  Um, I think they're closed.     

After only 10 short years, Lightnin' Salvage had become the ultimate juke joint:

A junk museum, toy store, Florida souvenir shop.

A bar, lounge, and live music venue.

A playground for the kids, people spontaneously dancing, a Lionel train rattling overhead.  

Kids running wild without a parent in sight.

Birthday parties and a local hangout.

Bocce ball, an airplane, a treehouse and greenhouse. 

Even the first ever NACHO NIGHT, the last day of Alachua County School, and a big party to celebrate Nacho Libre.

There was a night for storytelling and a night for bellydancing. Folk, bluegrass, blues, rock n roll and klezmer music sharing the same stage. Open Mic night. A pinecone contest. The night of a thousand ukeleles. A place that many artists had a part in creating. A 10 1/2 year art project.

I discovered the picture above on Twitter and I don't even know who took it but I bet it was a patron of the Ole' Barn, a bar across the street. It was a Monday evening, December 5th, 2016. We were closed all day but I had been in installing a new upgraded wifi. Home and on the couch I got a call from a  food truck owner who had just finished his Monday night bowling game. He said the place was sky high in flames.... "through the roof!"

 

 By the time I arrived at the scene the next picture is the one I took, and this was as close as I was allowed to get.... I wonder if you can imagine my state of mind. This had been my art studio for 10 years, an art installation studio, and more than half of my business... 

But back up in time to the Spring of 2006, the previous tenants had just moved out, and I was trying to figure out what to do with the place....

Below are some pictures of the place through the years...

between 2006-2016