Electronic music fans, DJs rally to save iconic Tempe live music venue

Fans of electronic dance music (EDM) are rallying to save the live music scene at a beloved venue in Tempe following complaints by residents who live in a high-rise building across the street.

According to a social media post by Shady Park, which is located on University Drive just east of Mill Avenue, residents living in a new luxury high-rise apartment directly across the street launched an aggressive campaign several weeks ago to shut down live music at the venue. The restaurant, popular for serving up ramen, sushi, pizza, and drinks, hosts several live music shows a week in its open backyard portion. The shows feature local and national headline EDM artists and DJs.

The venue has operated under live music permits since 2015 which allows them to host live music, both indoor and outdoor, until 2 a.m. seven days a week. For 14 months during the COVID-19 pandemic, Shady Park limited it’s operations and temporarily paused their live music. During that pause, residents started to move into a new retirement community apartment complex directly across the street from Shady Park. When the venue resumed its live music shows, a group of residents living at the retirement community reportedly contacted the City of Tempe in an attempt to shut down the live music. According to Shady Park, they received a notice from Tempe city officials threatening criminal charges and demanded the venue “refrain from selling tickets in advance of live entertainment.”

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