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Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Discussion pertaining to Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Muskegon, Battle Creek, Big Rapids, and Michiana
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MWmetalhead
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Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by MWmetalhead » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:13 pm

I recall posting a thread here a couple years ago inquiring as to the status of the Orbit Room. I did so because I never heard any promos on local radio anymore for concerts there. It was also located on an outlot to a largely moribund shopping center and was facing stiff competition from the Deltaplex, the Intersection and more recently, 20 Monroe Live.

Through the years, the Orbit Room has hosted some of the biggest acts in hard rock and alternative music. It was well known in the mid/late 90's for a weekly "teen night." Usually, when it wasn't functioning as a concert venue, its main purpose was that of a "club."

Years ago, the Orbit Room hosted such acts as Disturbed, Korn, Tool, and even Jerry Seinfeld! I also remember a great promotion with KLQ (back when it was a great station, around the year 2000) known as the Bud Light Blind Date, where a nationally renowned band would play a private show for contest winners. Locally, that event always took place at the Orbit Room.

Things really went downhill it seemed following the 2013 passing of its longtime owner, Don Dorshimer.

https://www.mlive.com/entertainment/gra ... ith_d.html

Well, evidently within the past 24-48 hours, signs have been posted on the venue's doors that it is "closed," and in fact, is evidently in violation of local fire & safety codes!

WOODTV reports the following:
On Monday afternoon, the owner said the club hasn't yet officially closed, but that its future seems grim. The owner said all shows for January have been canceled. A source told 24 Hour News 8 the venue has been liquidating assets.
Story:
https://www.woodtv.com/news/grand-rapid ... 1681304912


Greta Thunberg is a snot nosed brat who needs to STFU.

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Art Van Damme
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by Art Van Damme » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:25 pm

Wow! Thanks for the info, MW.

I go a little further back to the Club Eastbrook days. Saw a lot of oldies groups there in the early 90s: Mitch Ryder, Three Dog Night, and others. I recall Red Hot Chili Peppers and Gin Blossoms playing there, too. Eastbrook Mall was an also-ran back then. Can’t believe it’s still standing.

Is Sayfee’s (or the building) still around? They used to have good Manhattans.

Happy New Year



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MWmetalhead
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by MWmetalhead » Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:36 pm

Man - seeing the RHCP in their early days there would've been absolutely phenomenal!

The former Eastbrook Mall is no longer an indoor mall; it was converted to a power center several years ago. It is now known as the Shops at CenterPoint. It is actually rather successful these days and has a very attractive looking facade.

I've heard of Sayfee's (never dined there) and do not know if the building or the restaurant still exist.

Also nearby in my youth:
-Eastbrook Lanes
-Anazeh Sands Billiards Hall
-Sensations Gentlemen's Club


Greta Thunberg is a snot nosed brat who needs to STFU.

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TheForce
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by TheForce » Tue Jan 01, 2019 5:34 pm

Wow, that is sad news. I never had the chance to go there. Had some decent rock acts.



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zackeast
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Location: Work in St. Joseph / Live in Grand Rapids

Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by zackeast » Tue Jan 01, 2019 6:34 pm

Henry Rollins about 5 years ago. Completely packed room.



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grsportsguy
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by grsportsguy » Tue Jan 01, 2019 7:25 pm

Off the top of my head, Kings X, Extreme and Cheap Trick. It was a decent venue at one time.



A1B1C1D1
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by A1B1C1D1 » Wed Jan 02, 2019 1:20 am

Village Inn (laser disc karaoke), Mr. Fables...



bugzapper
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by bugzapper » Wed Jan 02, 2019 7:59 am

A1B1C1D1 wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 1:20 am
Village Inn (laser disc karaoke), Mr. Fables...
Big Boys. The only one that I know of that served alcohol and had live jazz.



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tc
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by tc » Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:50 am

Orbit Room also hosted KLQ's "Aris's Hometown Rock Music Search" back in the '90's as well.

I saw a lot of artists/bands there through the years; April Wine, Tragically Hip, Brother Cane, Megadeth, Saliva, Tesla, Dokken, Mr. Big, Jackyl, Jeff Healey band, Badfinger, Frank Marino, Jesus & Mary Chain, The Cult, White Zombie, Sass Jordan, Chevelle, to name a few.



Windchill
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by Windchill » Wed Jan 02, 2019 2:00 pm

I remember seeing REO Speedwagon there, perhaps in the early to mid 90's.

Sayfee's the restaurant is no more, but the building is occupied by a consignment furniture outlet.



krafty
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by krafty » Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:01 pm

First show there was Megadeth/Testament in 1990ish. I saw Ministry, White Zombie, Slayer, Extreme, KMFDM, The Misfits, Ghost and a whole bunch of other shows there. The HVAC was always iffy - always muggy as hell in there. I think Ghost was the last show I saw there, about 3 years ago?

Don was the best, but yeah, it's gone way downhill over the past 10 or so years especially.



Hombre Grande
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by Hombre Grande » Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:19 am

While the closing may be news-worthy I'm curious what does this have to do with broadcasting in West Michigan? Granted it does quote a story from Channel 8 that seems to be the only tie-in.




Trophyhead
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by Trophyhead » Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:49 am

Which way to go here...May as well first offer a thought to the question, "Orbit Room closure, what does it have to do with broadcasting?"

Considering the number of regional to national acts that performed in the Orbit Room/Club Eastbrook over the years, which were the focus of promotion for area radio stations, I would say that the facilities' demise is very reasonable subject matter.

The only act I ever saw at Club Eastbrook was the Indigo Girls, got on their guest list through my sister-in-law's acquaintance with them. Met the ladies backstage after the show, this apparently was in 1993 or '94. Googling the event for an accurate report is a bit sketchy.



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SteveL
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Re: Looks like the Orbit Room is finally toast; share your memories here!

Post by SteveL » Fri Jan 04, 2019 11:30 am

Back in my days at LAV we had the Black Crowes come to town for the first time and I remember the tickets were only $8 - great show! Also, in our brief run of "new music" we had the Rollins Band there around '91 and that was a standout for me.



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