Local Entertainment in Downtown Flint
"...this generation of performers is the most talented I’ve ever seen"
January 25, 2017
Located downtown Flint, Michigan, Flint Local 432 is a music venue where various entertainment is provided. Founded in the mid-80s by Joel Rash, the Flint Local is known as one of the longest-running independently owned music venues in the country. Also known as “The Local,” Flint Local 432 provides a substance free environment intended to welcome people of all ages, since young people are often excluded when it comes to concerts. Joel Rash explained, “When I was a teenager it was very frustrating to not be able to see bands because their shows were at bars that were 21 and up. We started renting halls to do all-ages shows, and things just took off from there.”
The actual process of building and putting together the newest version of Flint Local 432, which closed in 2009 and reopened in 2012, came with many difficulties. “At the beginning we had tons of energy, but no idea what we were doing. The music scene was exploding, but we didn’t know how to organize the business or deal with taxes and insurance,” Rash says. With a generous grant from the CS Mott Foundation for electrical and plumbing upgrades and all the cleaning, painting and building of the stage done by volunteers, over 100 people contributed towards this process. Once they learned the administrative details, found a great staff and had bands playing there regularly, the business flourished; “ Right now, things are running really smoothly. We hope that continues.”
With genres like punk, indie, rock, metal, hip hop, Americana and more, the Local has switched from mainly hosting punk rock concerts to being a more diverse music venue where local and national bands of all genres are welcome to play. Since 1985, thousands of bands have played at this venue, from those like My Chemical Romance to Yellowcard, Avenged Sevenfold toBlack Flag. Hence the name, The Flint Local is home to many bands that are in fact local. Although founder Joel Rash doesn’t really spend much time at the Local because of the great staff having things under control, leaving him with not much to do, he still listens to a variety of local bands. “I still listen to a ton of local music and believe this generation of performers is the most talented I’ve ever seen: Teaheads, BRITES, BayBro and GS tha Dream, Oakhill, Katie Stanley, Sprowt, Baggage, there are so many great bands right now.”
In addition to the Local’s well-known rock band concerts, they also put on all sorts of different art and cultural events. If loud concerts aren’t really your thing, the Flint Local also holds theatre, film, dance, spoken word and puppetry shows as well.
Shows average a five dollar cost, usually end around 11:15pm, and offer free parking in the main parking lot Downtown Flint. As a parent or guardian, it’s reasonable and expected for you to be nervous dropping your teenager off Downtown Flint for a concert or other event, but with the Local’s fully staffed building and their strict no alcohol or any other substances policy, it’s assured that everything will be safe and secure.
Some upcoming events to look forward to at Flint Local:
January 21st: the NexGen Hip Hop Showcase – 7:30PM
January 28th: Avalon Black/The Tom Toms/Wells/The Jerkuloids – 7:30PM
February 3rd: Fashion Show – 7:30PM
February 10th: Jenn McMillian/Escaping Pavement/Goldblum/Katelin/Ashley – 7:30PM
Additional information can be found on their website.