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This is what the building looked like when I bought it in 2006: An empty warehouse.

Now I am building another empty warehouse but out of block and lots of poured concrete. 

 

 

 

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 30% 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

By the way... here's a link to the old Lightnin' Salvage website, there are even more pictures there & links to videos.

http://www.lightninsalvage.com/

 Live music 5 nights a week!

Check back often for updated calendar. 

Sneaky Peeks

In this section I will reveal little details of the new LSE that I won't show anywhere else. In other words, you won't find these pics on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, but only here on the website. In an age where we are overwhelmed with media, I find something romantic about this little corner booth where I can experience something new and secret. There was my favorite booth in the old LSE, if you were walking into the lounge from the gift shop, it was in the very back left corner.  I could prop my legs up on the bench and see EVERYTHING in the whole place and still almost be invisible. Well, new LSE will have it's own secrets. I'll store them here. 

Experimenting with mosaic tile making... for the bathrooms and exterior. 

Experimenting with mosaic tile making... for the bathrooms and exterior. 

 I started to make a couple table tops for LSE. The tables might remind folks of some of the collections from the original LSE. 

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I really want it all to be a surprise. I want to keep anything and everything about the new LSE a secret, because it's more exciting to watch it and let the expectations build up..... But I also want to share what I am working on. I want the serious fans to be able to sneak peek some stuff. That's why we are both here. You have found the inside track, the secret phone number, the hideaway booth. 

The picture above is a table I made. The next pic is the table my wife made. These tables are the obvious reminders of the juke joint I lost in the fire. I am still sad about what I lost. Making these tables is helping me reinvent and reimagine Lightnin Salvage Enterprises. 

Realizing I don't want the mosaic to be just rows of cute squares, and that I cannot make one small mosaic tile at a time, I am experimenting with making slabs that I score into smaller shapes. If they break on the lines like I hope, I should be able to make endless patterns and designs using various shapes, sizes, and colors. 

More tabletops in progress.....

More tabletops in progress.....

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