Friday, October 5, 2007

Mellow Mushroom Can't Be As Mellow As Two Art Chicks

[Sigh.]

Jogging down South Elm Street the other day, I was thinking how it still has the ambiance of an old-fashioned, small-town downtown, with some distinctive Greensboro touches. Old guys hanging out in front of Coe Grocery. Kindley's used office furniture. Two Art Chicks.

Enter Mellow Mushroom, exit Two Art Chicks.

The chainification of downtown Greensboro has begun. It will be good for property and business owners, bad for downtown Greensboro's being someplace, instead of anyplace or everyplace.

Two Art Chicks has been an ideal downtown citizen, not only providing gallery space for local artists, but also meeting room for neighborhood redevelopment confabs. (It looks like it might now be a victim of its own public-spiritedness.)

But the hard truth is that most people care a lot more about good pizza than they do about picturesque charm or local art.

[Sigh.]

12 comments:

jimcaserta said...

The Mellow Mushroom on 4th st in Winston was a welcome addition to downtown, and one that is almost always busy. I don't remember what it replaced though. While technically a chain, most MM restaurants are different and have a different feel, reflecting their locale. I'd also imagine that the MM's hours are longer than 2AC.

Sue said...

I don't think we'll hit "chainification" of downtown until there's a Starbucks there.

Billy The Blogging Poet said...

Sadly "chainification" is exactly what the powers that be are hoping to bring us.

"Beware the chains that bind."

Kim said...

I hate Starbucks. I like Dunkin' Donuts. Can we get rid of all Starbucks and replace them with Dunkin' Donuts? That would make me very happy.

I never made it to 2 Art Chicks. When will it be leaving? Maybe I still have time to get there. I've never heard of the Mellow Mushroom. I'm always on the lookout for good pizza (hard to find), so maybe I'll check it out.

pierce_e said...

It's sad to see 2AC leave, but have you checked out the broader loss to the local arts? Our school system is slashing art and music programs in the middle and elementary schools. Many kids will only have art or music for 1/2 the year. In one school the kids will only get 5 music classes all year!

Anonymous said...

I've been hearing about Mushroom coming for some time, but am a little surprised by the ultimate choice of location- not as much action on that side of the tracks.
There's been a couple of comments here about Starbucks, so it seems worth mentioning that there's been talk of one going in on ground level of Center Pointe.

Jim Waters said...

My wife and I are the owners of the MM in Winston Salem and the forthcoming one in Greensboro. I hope and expect we will make a positive impact on South Elm. We like the neighborhood and feel comfortable in it.

I turly don't feel we are everyplace or anyplace. You won't find us at the mall, but we are known to hang out on the other side of the tracks.

For what it is worth, we use local artists and local vendors throughout. Our plans are being developed and I believe people are going to be surprised at the product we bring there.

With that said, I welcome any and all comments as we bring this to life.

Be Good,

Jim Waters
Mellow Mushroom
watersjlcc@triad.rr.com

Anonymous said...

I think we can all say our author has never been to a Mellow Mushroom. Most, if not all, do not have a chain feel. The one in Winston Salem is urban / retro and very well done. It will be intriquing to see what they bring to Greensboro.

I wonder what the author feels about the city's plan for the development of the area on Elm Street South of Lee Street. Maybe he needs to get some vision that some change is positive.

I assume he is aware he is employed by the chainification of UNC- another anyplace, anywhere University.........

David Wharton said...

Your author does indeed have further thoughts on Mellow Mushroom and on South Elm St. redevelopment.

Anonymous said...

Then why the slam at a business such as Mellow Mushroom coming to South Elm?

The anywhere, everywhere comment seems to be lacking a lot of insight. With that said, bring on the great pizza, beers, music, etc.

Peace and Pizza!

David Wharton said...

The "anywhere" and "everywhere" remark was admittedly made on the basis of not enough knowledge of MM. When I got better information about MM, I posted it and changed my mind.

You did read the later posts I linked to, right?

Ben said...

Mellow Mushroom isn't an ordinary chain restaurant. I drive from Greensboro to Winston Salem on a regular basis just to eat there. I'm counting down the days until in opens up. I support keeping most chains away from downtown, but some places are better than others. An argument could be made that downtown Greensboro has become too yuppie and boring.