Mayor Hall Welcomes “Entertaining” Ideas
Prince George, B.C. – Finding something to do from an entertainment point of view in Prince George can be difficult to do, but there is definitely a demand for more of it.
The strong turnout at recent events in the city, like the outdoor concert by Honeymoon Suite and local band Audio Union at Pacific Western Brewery the second weekend in August and the Saturday Night Bazaar outside the Black Donkey Café the last weekend in August, seemed to indicate a desire for entertaining events and a willingness to support them. However, there is basically no night life in the city, certainly nothing that rivals the times had by residents who have been living and working and raising a family here over many years.
Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall also believes that people are looking for things to do. “I think you’re right, there is a demand for it, I think there’s a demand for various types of entertainment for various age demographics. That was proven out by Honeymoon Suite performing at PWB at their tailgate party and I’m hoping that that continues to be a yearly thing.”
“We have a couple of locations where there’s night life, I guess the old term is cabaret style, but we’re seeing things being done differently around the entertainment piece, where you have a one-off at PWB or a one-off at Black Donkey or some other location will do something different. Obviously there’s room in the city for a continuation of that kind of a night life scenario, and I’m hoping that we’ll see more of it and in different locations.”
The mayor says other venues might be “the Canada Games plaza or it could be a restaurant that looks at doing something. Nancy O’s does it, and I think that has become a real niche in our community.” He notes that the club-type business “is entrepreneurially driven so if somebody wants to put together a nightclub or a cabaret that’s driven by that business person out there that thinks they can make it viable. As I’ve said to many people who want to start things in our community, bring it to council and we would be open to the discussion.”
“There used to be a comedy club in town, for example, so maybe we’ll see another comedy club rise up. But I think if people are interested in an entertainment venue, bring it to council and we’d be willing to have a conversation or they can come by and talk to any of the council members about it.”
Mayor Hall says there is no doubt that many residents are looking for entertaining activities. “I hear it all the time, that night out at PWB, events at the winery, one-off events downtown and people say man, why isn’t there more of this, why don’t we do it more often?”
“I think it really struck me,” says Hall “when we take a look at the number of events that are held at CN Centre it’s amazing. There’s some big name entertainers who come to Prince George and they’re very well attended. And Honeymoon Suite, holy cow they’re been around for quite a while and to be able to have them in that kind of setting which was just a different setting, I think people like that kind of thing, they like something different.”
He says he is definitely not against holding more entertainment and night life events in Prince George. “No I’m not adverse to it, obviously it would depend what the proposal is but I’m certainly not opposed to having that conversation with a potential developer of an entertainment-style venue, whether it be a comedy club or a cabaret-type venue.”
“You know we’re hearing it from the younger demographic so we want students and the younger folks to move downtown and so you talk about the university and CNC students, they’ll come downtown but they’re looking for entertainment. Not always when you talk about entertainment downtown is it a nightclub kind of thing. It may be entertainment within a restaurant, and that’s been done as well and we are certainly open to talking about that kind of night life.”
Hall says we are slowly seeing the development of new venues in Prince George. “Take a look at the Crossroads Brewing Company for example. I mean that is going to be a new level of entertainment for our city and you see them all over when you go to other communities and it turns out to be a location where people can have an evening of it. It’s just a different venue and I think they’ll do very well. I like the idea that it’s something different for everyone to enjoy.”
“Look how popular the winery has been for hosting events, for example. The winery is very well known all across the province, and I think people are really looking for something different to do.”
“I’ve heard people talk about various locations they went to, Kamloops, Nanaimo, Vancouver, wherever it might be, and the question is, can we have something like that here? And I think we’re starting to see that grow.”