In Microtones, our newsletter-first column.
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MICROTONES by Ben Munson, contributor
The Lake Edge Shopping Center, located in the phantom realm between Madison and Monona, knows about joy and pain. In 2011, the strip mall bid farewell to the beloved Bongo Video. But in 2019, it’s home to the charming Lake Edge Seafood Company, the consistently wonderful Crema Café and Fired Up Pottery, one of the most reliable sources for adorable Mothers Day gifts in the entire Madison metro area.
When Mint Mark owners Chad Vogel and Sean Pharr announced this summer that they were opening a new bar in the old Elie’s Restaurant space, it was a time for joy. The Muskellounge and Sporting Club (destined to be referred to as the “Muskie”) vowed to focus on whiskey (especially Scotch), and rec room-style games like shuffleboard, ping pong and foosball, set in what Vogel described to The Capital Times as a “sailboat-meets-the-basement-you-grew-up-in” atmosphere. Given the promising description and the solid track record of the proprietors, excitement was high for the place to open in October.
But now November is here and the Muskie has yet to open its doors. Vogel said he and Pharr are now looking at March or April as a new timeframe for opening and attributed the delay to some planning conflicts.
“It’s a long story. The gist is of it is, if everything went exactly to plan we probably would have opened in October…but that almost never happens,” Vogel said.
He said that planning issues that arose once they got into the space meant the layout had to be changed to meet code requirements. That shrunk the usable space a little bit, but otherwise the Muskie will still eventually exist as originally imagined.
Vogel said that as long as the revised plans are approved, they will start building in December.
So, as painful as the process has been for Vogel and Pharr, and as drawn-out as the wait has been for the rest of us, there’s still good reason to hope for a spring filled with old fashioneds and friendly competition along the shores of Lake Monona.
New this week:
Sannidhi Shukla reports on the JAMS series and its efforts to bolster Madison’s dance music offerings. (Illustration by Shaun Soman.)
Holly Henschen and Scott Gordon explore their sneaky feelings about Elvis Costello.
On our Instagram, scenes and renderings from the groundbreaking at Arts + Literature Laboratory’s new space.
Join us on December 12 at Giant Jones Brewing Company for our Best of 2019 Listening Party.
Elsewhere on the Madison internet: Former That BBQ Joint chef Clement Henriques is raising money for a food truck. Julian Lynch releases a new video for his song “Catapulting.” At Edge Effects, Kendra Greendeer considers the representation of Indigenous histories on the UW-Madison campus.
Upcoming Tone Madison Events!
December 12: Tone Madison Best of 2019 Listening Party. Giant Jones Brewing Company, 6 to 9 p.m., free, 21+