Fri update: Good (and relatively unknown) party venue, credit card merchant services alternative, Isaac Hayes celebration, Casablanca, SEC kickoff party @ Double J

I’d like to start off today’s post by apologizing to Start Co. and their startup founders for leaving the Demo Day after-party so early. I had planned to hang out and network with the entrepreneurs until at least midnight. That didn’t happen and I was out before 10 with an upset stomach.

Here’s what happened: Between Demo Day and the after-party, there was a cocktail hour at the Silly Goose. That’s normally where I’d be anyway on a Thursday evening, so I attended the cocktail hour. People from Start Co. came over and handed me three green tickets. “What are these for?” I asked.

“Each one will get you any drink you want here,” they replied.

“Anything?” I asked.


Now, the Silly Goose is one of my neighborhood spots where I spend time with friends and drink cans of PBR. However, the Goose is also one of the best cocktail bars in the city, with a menu of hand-crafted cocktails. If I could trade a green ticket for anything I wanted, I damn sure wasn’t going to waste it on a domestic beer. “Make me your favorite drink from the cocktail menu,” I asked Jessica. “… that isn’t too girly, and that you think I would like.” She brought me a mojito. It was absolutely delicious, so I cashed in my remaining two tickets on mojitos as well.

Well, here’s the thing. I drink beer. I do shots, mainly Fireball. However, I almost never drink mixed drinks. It had probably been more than a year since I had more than one mixed drink back-to-back. My stomach couldn’t handle three successive mojitos. By the time I walked over to the after-party at 9, I wasn’t feeling well. By 9:45 I had to give up and go home.

The after-party venue, The Bradford at the Deluxe Arcade, was a beautiful space. I had never even heard of this venue until recently. It’s at 10 North Second, a block north of Paula & Raiford’s Disco. It was big enough for Start Co. to have two bars and two DJs. It can hold 300+ people and has 3000 square feet of space. It is a classy, elegant setting that I would recommend for parties and wedding receptions.

While at the Silly Goose I got to talk to one of the founders of Boosterville, a new mobile payment platform. It saves retailers 50-80% of fees that would go to credit card merchant services, charging a fee of only 1%. In addition, Boosterville allows merchants to offer a loyalty program, and Boosterville is cause-driven, donating a percentage of fees to local charities. I once worked in credit card merchant services, and I can tell you the status quo in that industry is a dinosaur. Nice to see a Start Co. startup working to make the dinosaur extinct.

The Daily News has a complete list of businesses that graduated from Start Co.’s accelerators.

Tonight is the weekly free Memphis Jams series at Handy Park at Third and Beale, kicking off at 6:30. This week’s live music will be Neosoulville presents an Isaac Hayes celebration,

Casablanca will be shown on the big screen at the Orpheum tonight at 7 PM. Come early for themed cocktails and movie-related activities.

Double J Smokehouse and Saloon will host an SEC kickoff party tomorrow from noon until 6. There will be drink specials and game day food specials. Wear your game day attire and look for your team’s tent station. Tickets are $10 plus an 89 cent fee, $5 of which goes to local charities. Your ticket gets you a wristband and two drink tickets.

That’s all for now. The last weekend before college football and fall festival season begins is almost here. I still have no definite plans, but I’m sure I will be out and about Downtown.