Get your headbanging neck ready: The Back Alley reopens Friday
CALGARY -- Are you ready to rock?
Seven years after shutting its doors, Calgary's Back Alley nightclub is turning things up to eleven with its grand reopening at its original location on Macleod Trail.
The club first opened in 1991 and for 23 years was known for loud nights of rock and metal, cheap drinks, minimalist decor, and an overall "anything goes" atmosphere.
"It was almost like a hidden secret. People almost didn’t want to admit they came here. It was kind of grungy, it was steel and cement, but everybody had a good time," said co-owner Dennis O'Neill.
The bar's ownership changed hands and the space was renovated to create the more upscale Marquee Beer Market & Stage. That bar hosted the occasional "Back Alley Night," and co-owner Jim Turner would come back to DJ. He said people were constantly telling him the Back Alley was missed and he knew there was a good opportunity to bring it back.
"The Back Alley, in its heyday, was one of the biggest bars when we had a whole ton of bars in this city — we had Electric Avenue, we had Macleod Trail, we had far more bars than we have now. We feel Calgary is under-serviced now for the size of the city," Turner said.
The new Back Alley is keeping some of the upgrades made during the Marquee renovation, O'Neill said they are going to bring back the old feeling of the former club, but things will be a little bit more comfortable.
"I think if we can bring our old attitude with this new room, I think people are going to be really impressed with us," he said.
The Back Alley management team also brokered a deal with Gruman's Deli, which will be providing food service for the club.
Turner said they are lowering pricing on everything, from coat check, to bottle service to cover charge, in an effort to have some of the best prices in the city.
"You can come here with $50 and have a great night and I can’t say that for too many bars in the city," he said.
There will also be no charge for people who work in the oil and gas industry.
The Back Alley grand opening happens Friday night at the Back Alley Nightclub at 4630 Macleod Trail S.W.