The Shitty Barn needs a new roof

The seasonal venue in Spring Green is asking patrons for help.

The seasonal venue in Spring Green is asking patrons for help.

The team behind the Shitty Barn in Spring Green are asking show-goers to help replace the proudly dilapidated venue’s roof, as it prepares to announce its 2019 season. People who give to a donation campaign will get an early look at the venue’s upcoming calendar.

The independent venue routinely sells out shows during its spring-to-fall seasons, drawing crowds from Spring Green, Madison, and even communities in eastern Iowa. Despite literally being a small, old barn with an all-volunteer crew, the Shitty Barn has built up impressive pull over the years, bringing in artists including Low, Heartless Bastards, Riley Walker, and Margaret Glaspy. Enough money comes in to pay artists and cover operating costs, but the venue wants to raise between $25,000 and $30,000 to replace its roof, which is leaking and shedding shingles.


“The rainy day is here, but The Rainy Day Fund ain’t,” co-founder Chris Staples wrote in an email blast on Tuesday morning.

The roof shouldn’t impede the upcoming season, says Allen DeSchepper, a member of the booking team. Currently the Shitty Barn has 31 shows confirmed for this year, with a few more to come, possibly including installments of an experimental electronic series the venue experimented with in summer 2018. “Chris wasn’t kidding when he said you might find shingles on the lawn after a windstorm,” DeSchepper says. The decline of the roof hasn’t yet become a safety or structural issue, he adds, “but give it a few more years and we might be in that area.” He adds that, given that the venue really leans into its run-down aesthetic, some patrons have actually booed the idea of roof repairs.

Tickets for the 2019 season go on sale April 1.

Help us raise $5,000 by Tuesday and set a Tone Madison record.

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