Station 8 Cafe aims to become community hub
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This article was published 21/07/2017 (2144 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Since May, the building that was formerly Winnipeg’s Fire Hall No. 8 at 325 Talbot Ave. has been home to a new cafe.
The Station 8 Cafe — which, for the moment, is only open on Fridays from 6 to 11 p.m. — aims to be a community hub for Elmwood.
Dennis Maione, manager of the cafe, says his vision was to create “some kind of a community arts venue, something that was accessible to people in the neighbourhood, something that created excellence but was affordable.”
The cafe sells hot beverages such as double espressos, Americanos, lattes, cappuccinos, tea, and hot chocolate as well as soft drinks. Prices range from $1 (tea and soft drinks) to $3 (cafe mochas).
The Friday evening program at Station 8 differs week to week, with some nights featuring musical performers, while others are board game evenings and some nights just offering a chance for people to talk and use the wireless internet connection in the cafe.
While the cafe appears to be a standalone entity, it is organized by the Riverwood Church and appears on the church’s general ledger. The Riverwood Church, he says, operates in Elmwood using a “distributed church model.”
Riverwood Church owns four buildings in the same general area — The Factory, at 257 Riverton Ave.; The Firehall; The Warehouse at 270 Gordon Ave; and The Garage, at 274 Talbot Ave, (which houses a food bank).
Maione is employed by Riverwood Church as the site pastor for The Firehall, which hold services on Sundays and keeps office hours Tuesdays through Fridays.
“One of the things I’ve learned over the years is that churches are good at hoarding beautiful spaces”, Maoine says.
As site pastor, he wanted to share what he feels is a beautiful space with the community at large, and he was quick to point out that the cafe does not select performers based on religiosity.
“The evaluation, for me, about booking bands here is ‘are they worth paying for’?” Maoine said.
Maione has aspirations for Station 8 Cafe as an arts venue, hoping that one day people with the means to travel across the city will make choices between attending the cafe and, say, the West End Cultural Centre for performances.
For more info on Riverwood Church Community, visit riverwood.cc
Dylon Martin is a community correspondent for Elmwood.
West Broadway community correspondent
Dylon Martin is a community correspondent for West Broadway.