We don’t yet have a full grasp on how the COVID-19 pandemic will reshape Seattle’s arts and nightlife landscape, but at least one institution will not return as we knew it.
Over the weekend, beloved nightclub and theater Re-bar announced it will not reopen in its current Denny Triangle location.
“With the phased reopening plan, we wouldn’t be open until fall with severe restrictions,” the ownership wrote on Facebook. “Its [sic] been costing us $10,000 a month to stay closed and we cant [sic] sustain this any longer.”
According to the announcement, owners plan to take an 18-month hiatus and reopen in fall of 2021 as a bar and nightclub in South Seattle. They plan to add a full food menu and operate seven days a week.
For three decades, Re-bar has served up an eclectic mix of alternative theater and music, hosting popular Sunday dance party Flammable — the longest-running house music night west of Chicago — alternative theater performances and LGBTQ artists of various stripes. The club is where popular drag comedian Dina Martina and veteran Seattle DJ Riz Rollins got their starts, and where Nirvana held its infamous “Nevermind” release party.
Re-bar celebrated its 30th anniversary in February, knowing its future in its longtime home was uncertain. The downtown building was put up for sale last year, co-owner Dane Wilson revealed in an interview on KEXP’s Sound and Vision last fall.
“I think of Re-bar as a school where people get an education in how to live, how to be and how to celebrate,” Rollins told The Seattle Times earlier this year.
Here’s Re-bar’s full Facebook post: