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The owners wanted to expand next door in part to offer more events; the shop hosted a series of shows throughout the years, with musicians setting up in a corner of Cafe Mustache for intimate performances. The new space is primed for events: it's got a stage near the back of the room, and a PA system to go with it; a service bar; and plenty of the comfortable charm of Cafe Mustache's original storefront. "We're not like all of the sudden just a bar—we're still a coffee shop, we still serve food all day through the night," Darski says. "Obviously we'll have events, but it's not like all of the sudden we're just a bar-venue. We're more than that—always have been."
Darski says Cafe Mustache is expanding its monthly events series now that the new space is open. It will host the Ratchet Series, an ongoing jazz event that launched at the Skylark in 2007 and will take place on the first Tuesday of the month; local a cappella group Blue Ribbon Glee Club will also take over the stage once a month. Darski says he hopes to set up more shows for the weekend nights—specifically Thursday through Saturday—and Sunday will be left for something different. "Sundays we're doing karaoke," he says.
Cafe Mustache has also expanded its hours—it'll be open from 7 AM to 2 AM every day, and workers will serve on different storefronts depending on the time of day. "Before 6 [PM] you get served at the cafe side—there's a full venue for the day, the Wifi's on," Darski says. "Then at 6 you switch. The Wifi shuts off, the menu gets changed to the nighttime menu, which has different food options—more drinks and stuff like that—and you get served on the bar side."
Both storefronts will remain open during business hours, and the stores are connected by a couple fire doors built out during the expansion; one door is for customers, the other sits between the service counters on either side, which meet near an alcove containing Cafe Mustache's large vinyl collection. The shop still sells records and cassettes from local artists on the cafe side, and Cafe Mustache's proclivity for vinyl spills over into its event programming. One of the events for the new space's inaugural weekend is an all-vinyl dance party helmed by MC-producer Fess Grandiose. Take a look at the full schedule of events for the weekend below—all of them are free—as well as photos of the new room.
Thursday, May 14: Midwest Action presents a night of acoustic music featuring Joyeux, Matthew Kennedy, and Jesse W. Johnson (9 PM).
Friday, May 15: Body Rock, Fess Grandioise's all vinyl dance party (10 PM).
Saturday, May 16: Mako Sica, Naan Violence, and Plastic Crimewave Syndicate (9 PM).