Friday, August 19, 2011

Town Hall

In the mid 1970's some guys from North Carolina scoped out our little town and decided that it was a good place to open a higher class joint with a higher class of live entertainment.

They picked a familiar spot, under the parking lot at Draper and Jackson Streets (the eventual home of Mish Mish and a bunch of others).  The main nightclub area was full of exotic woods, glass, chrome ... well, you get the picture ... oh and big ol' fish tanks too.

Jeremy, one of the NC guys, hired me to help open up a deli in the front part of the club.  It was a lot of work, but a lot of fun coming up with a menu.  One of our specialties was a hot mushroom sub, and I also insisted we sell Dannon yogurt which was unavailable anywhere else in the Blacksburg area.

The musical acts were great.  I remember John Prine (Dear Abby, Dear Abby), Robert Palmer, and a host of other stellar performers.

If I remember correctly, the next thing to come in right after Town Hall folded was Cowboy's .... complete with mechanical bull.


  1. Around 1978-1980 this place was called "Spanky's". Was that before or after "Town Hall"? "Cowboys" I believe was 1982ish

  2. Town Hall preceded Spanky's by a couple of years. I only know that because I ran the deli. I left Blacksburg in early 1978 and returned in the summer of 1980, so I missed out on what Spanky's was like. If someone would like to write about it you can be a guest blogger for the day and I'll try to find some photos of the place.

  3. Spanky's ... that wouldn't be the same Spanky's chain that branched off from Macado's, would it? (Not sure if Macado's was open back then, but the story I always heard was that two brothers owned the Macado's chain. They had a falling out and one of the brothers left and started the Spanky's chain which I believe has now folded.) I've been to a couple of Spanky's and at least two of the Macado's and they are (were) basically the same thing.

  4. Different Spankys. One of the one's you are talking about was in downtown Fredericksburg for a long time, and possibly Charlottesville too. The original Blacksburg Macado's was across the street from where it is now, to the right of Kroger.

  5. I was 16 when I saw John Prine at Spanky's Place in 1976. Fake ID courtesy of the mother of the kids I babysat for.