Satchel’s Pizza is resuming live music five nights a week three months after a fire destroyed part of the restaurant’s property.
Satchel Raye, the 49-year-old owner of Satchel’s, announced Saturday that performers will be scheduled at a new temporary stage, dubbed “Lightnin’ Salvage Lite,” in the back of the restaurant’s parking lot. The December fire damaged the gift shop and outdoor seating area, called “Lightnin’ Salvage,” where live music was held.
“We had lost a lot of business, but this is a way we can kind of keep the momentum going and make money for our new building,” Raye said.
After the fire destroyed the gift shop, which made about 30 percent of the store’s business, live performances had to end, Raye said. But after an increase in weekday business, Raye said he wanted to bring them back.
The temporary stage area, which can hold about 40 people, is outside below a decoration airplane suspended 12 feet in the air.
“We’re trying to create the same casual, low-key environment that we once had,” he said. Nightly performances, which have included belly dancing and live storytelling, will last through graduation at UF, Raye said. If business remains steady, the restaurant will continue performances through summer.
Nick Johnson, a 22-year-old UF geography and sustainability studies senior, said he has eaten and enjoyed the local music at Satchel’s for more than five years.
“It’s such a unique restaurant,” Johnson said. “I love how they’re continuing to spotlight these local bands.”
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On Dec. 5, a fire burned down Satchel Pizza’s gift shop and open-bar waiting area, Lightnin’ Salvage Enterprises. Now, owner Satchel Raye is working to rebuild it and hopes to reopen it by December.