Mojos Caffe & Gallery
Location: 2210 Washington Blvd., Ogden; 801-603-6737, www.facebook.com/#!/mojos.ogden
Proprietor: Ron Atencio, owner/operator
Opened: 2004 for open-mic nights only; 2005 as a full venue
Capacity: About 100 for seated shows, about 200 for concert-style stand-up shows
Hours: 8 p.m.-11 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; open for touring shows and special events other nights
Entry fee: Varies with show; prices start at about $6, with $12 usually tops for touring shows
Vibe: Atencio conceived of the club as a West Coast-style creative cafe/coffeehouse, with all forms of respectful arts and music welcome.
"I originally conceived it as more of a cafe with music, but as soon as we opened, it became more music than cafe, by demand," he said.
Music of all styles, from electronica to folk to hard-core metal, is played on various nights. The club first featured exclusively local acts, with the occasional independent touring artist. In 2011, it began offering touring bands on a fairly regular basis.
The overall feel of the place is family-room-meets-art-gallery, with multiple seating areas. Regional artists' goods (some on loan, some for sale), as well as contributions by patrons, decorate the walls. Crayons and other inexpensive arts supplies are available to patrons, and are used regularly. Board games are available, too.
Refreshments: Coffees, cocoa, hot teas, bottled waters, sodas and baked goods
Rules of the room: Respect for each other and for the performers is paramount. Every age, lifestyle and political viewpoint is welcome.
"Respectful discussions are OK, but I do not allow things to get heated," said Atencio.
He also notes that heckling or rudeness are not allowed when it comes to the performers: "Most of them are young, and they are up there trying hard, maybe for the first time. It's not easy to do."
Atencio also guards against any sort of sexual predatory behavior in his establishment.
"This place is about friendships," he said. "And with all ages involved, I really watch. No sort of thing where people in their 20s, or older -- men or women -- can bother any of the kids is permitted."
He also says he doesn't tolerate "groupie" behavior.
"You know, you have these young girls interested in rock stars, especially with the touring bands. I make it very clear both to the girls and the bands that this is just not going to happen here," Atencio said. "Now, if age-appropriate friendships evolve into romances, I have no problem with that. I've even married a few Mojos' couples. But this is definitely no place for any kind of casual hook-ups. Stay away, if that is your deal."
Future plans: In February, Atencio upgraded his sound system and stage to better accommodate touring bands. He is in discussions with a band to open one additional night a week for karaoke with a band, instead of prerecorded tracks. He would like to open regularly more evenings each week, and perhaps as a coffeehouse during daytime hours. Atencio also hopes one day to expand his menu !-- offering entrees, smoothies and such -- and aims to set regular hours for his companion music-and-art-themed consignment and thrift store, Spike's.
Location: 3109 Wall Ave., Ogden; 801-540-0334, www.facebook.com/#!/thebasement.ogden
Proprietor: Jason Allen, owner/operator
Opened: 2009 at its first location on 24th Street, relocated to its current spot in 2011
Hours: Varies, as shows are booked, but music typically runs from 8 p.m. to about 10:30 p.m. on concert nights. "I try to end the shows a bit earlier to help the younger kids meet their curfews but not miss out on the headliners," Allen said.
Entry fee: Prices start about $5, topping out at around $12 for touring shows
Vibe: Allen was once a patron of Ted Shupe's all-ages Ogden venue, The Junction, which closed in 2001. Allen wanted a similar concert venue where kids were welcome and music of every stripe is the focus.
"We've recently developed kind of a reputation as a metal or hard-core venue, but we also do indie rock and acoustic shows," said Allen. "I am now in the final stages of confirming some good pop punk and acoustic shows this summer, including hosting one with Rookie of the Year. We have built a reputation for taking good care of the bands, so they will want to come back, and tell other bands and their bookers that we are a good place to play. It's taken us a while to build, and that's OK. We wanted to grow at the rate of the local music scene -- as it has expanded, so have we."
Refreshments: Water and soft drinks. "With the dancing and all, it is important for the kids' safety to see they can keep hydrated," said Allen.
Rules of the room: Allen has a zero-tolerance attitude on any type of fighting, and backs that up with a strong security force.
"Keeping these kids safe in the concert environment is our number-one focus," he said. "We want to make sure that parents feel comfortable with letting us watch their kids and letting them have fun for a couple of hours. I used to be a teacher, and I took the responsibility of watching over the kids during the school day as seriously as I did educating them. I truly believe music is also a great educator. These are young kids that are impressionable, and I want to make sure they are safe to learn and grow."
Future plans: Allen is currently expanding to add a 600-capacity room to the existing space, as well as new restrooms to accommodate the additional patrons. He expects to open the additional space in mid- to late-summer. With two distinct venues, Allen hopes to lure a wide array of AAA touring bands and genres.
Location: 309 W. 1300 North, Sunset; 801-682-5532, www.facebook.com/#!/epicwaveclub
Proprietor: Kandy Downs, owner/operator
Hours: 8:30 p.m.-about midnight Fridays and Saturdays, with rental hours available
Entry fee: Typically $5 to $10; private parties start about $100 an hour, including refreshments and deejay
Vibe: The focus of the club is for the 12 to 18 set, with some nondrinking college parties included. Music is primarily provided by deejays. Epic Wave also sponsors a dance company that used the space for performances. It has also hosted a few live bands and one battle of the bands. Downs also regularly rents the room for birthday parties and other events.
Refreshments: Concessions are available, from soft drinks to light snacks, with more extensive food items as needed for parties and special events.
Rules of the room: Downs, who is the mother of sons in junior high and high school, wants a venue where both the parents and the kids can feel safe and have a good time.
"As a mom and a nurse, I wanted to make this somewhere where I would feel comfortable leaving my kids," she said. "And we have an all-volunteer staff -- 14 on my crew, age 12 to 19, that run this club. And they do run it well. I expect a lot of them, and they deliver."
She sees having these young volunteers on staff as a community service. "It gives them valuable work experiences and teaches them a lot about expectations and responsibility. Here, they learn how to run security, to run sound, some of them even learn to deejay themselves. After they work for me, it gives them a reference and a rA(c)sumA(c) that they can use."
Future plans: Downs originally tried to open on Thursdays as well, strictly for junior high school patrons, but found it hard to draw the younger kids out on a "school night."
"Now we've kind of gotten the word out about the club, we may try opening on Thursdays during summer break to see if there is an interest when getting up for school is not a factor."
Get Air Sports
Locations: 1821 W. 4000 South, Roy; 801-784-4117; 1188 SportsPlex Drive, Kaysville; 801-499-5247; www.getairtrampolineparks.com
Proprietor: Jake Goodwill, CEO
Hours: Roy location: 3 p.m.-10 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 3 p.m.-midnight Fridays, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturdays. Kaysville location is open the same hours, except for Saturdays, when it is open until midnight.
Entry fee: $15 for "Club Get Air" (10 p.m.-midnight Fridays at the Roy facility); regular price is $10 hourly, or $5 for the "Small Air" room (for children under 46 inches in height). Party rates and other special promotions are also available.
Vibe: These venues, as the name implies, are about sports-jumping (trampoline, foam pits, etc.) more than music. The Roy location hosts "Club Get Air" on Fridays from 10 p.m. to midnight, which includes not only access to all of the trampolines, pits and other jumping, but also free Wi-Fi, a gaming system and a deejay playing a mix of music and delivering cool lighting and mild smoke effects.
"We don't let the smoke get too thick, so people can see what they are doing while jumping -- just a little for atmosphere, to make it feel like a nightclub," Goodwill said.
Refreshments: Mostly vending machine food and drinks. "Somehow, jumping and food are not a good mix," said Goodwill. "Go figure, right? But we do have food at our Friday night Club Get Air, despite my better judgment, included with the package, with things like tacos and burgers." He laughed. "With the emphasis here of keeping the kids active, up and moving, you just have to have food for them, or they can't stand it."
Rules of the room: A liability waiver must be filled out and signed by a parent/guardian, if under 18 years of age, in order to enter the club. No diving or extreme tricks are allowed, and no roughhousing. Only one person at a time is permitted in the foam pit.
"Of course, any all-ages venue wants to keep the kids safe, but with the athletic aspect or our place, we need to make sure no one gets injured," notes Goodwill.
Future plans: Locations also include two in Utah County and an outlet in Temecula, Calif. More are planned to open soon across the U.S. and in Costa Rica.
-- Linda East Brady