Barbès has been showcasing a wide array of musical acts at it’s 376 9th Street location in Park Slope for 15 years.
Now, thanks to skyrocketing rents and operating costs, the venue has had to set up an Indiegogo page to raise $70,000 to help keep it open for another five years (when the current lease ends).
“Changing demographics and a new economic reality are now threatening us,” a message on the club’s fundraising page reads. “Today Barbès owes a total of $70,000 – $20,000 to be repaid before July 1st. So we turn to you…”
“Surviving as a small business in this new, re-branded Brooklyn has become a sometimes insurmountable challenge,” the message explains. “The overall price of doing business has increased tremendously (higher rent, increase in the cost of goods, services, permits, insurance etc.. ) and we have accumulated a debt that our dwindling profit margin has made nearly impossible to manage.”
Olivier Conan, the owner of Barbès, owes $50,000 to his bank and $20,000 to his landlord, mostly for city services-related costs, the Indiegogo page states.
While his landlord has been patient and understanding, the city has placed a lien on the building housing Barbès, so a deadline of July 1st has been set for $20,000.
Fortunately, the Indiegogo page has already raised over $30,000, but the venue still has a ways to go before it meets its overall goal.
They are offering several musical perks for contributions including digital downloads of albums and CDs. They are also offering tickets to the benefit concert they are hosting on Friday, June 9 at drom in the East Village (85 Avenue A) to help raise additional funds.
Check out the Barbès Indiegogo page if you’d like to contribute or find out more information.