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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : local May 26, 2016

3/9/2013 3:50:00 PM
Unique venue: The Main Stage to bring new opportunities to Verde Valley
VVN/Jon Hutchinson
Rebecca Riffel and Christopher Robin
VVN/Jon Hutchinson
Rebecca Riffel and Christopher Robin
VVN/Jon Hutchinson
The parking lot at 1 S. Main St. in Cottonwood can currently hold 42 cars.
VVN/Jon Hutchinson
The parking lot at 1 S. Main St. in Cottonwood can currently hold 42 cars.

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter

COTTONWOOD -- The Verde Valley has a number of small venues for music, comedy, the arts and community gatherings.

There are a couple school auditoriums for larger performances with fixed seating, but there are few large locations where you can see a name performer, hold a large wedding or stage corporate events in a comfortable setting without traveling to Flagstaff, Prescott or Phoenix.

Three young people hope to bring name acts to the Verde Valley by opening a new venue in Cottonwood that, eventually, might eventually accommodate up to 400 people at a time.

"The Main Stage hopes to open first as a lounge in late April with the entire venue opening in late 2013," Rebecca Riffel announced. "When phase two is completed, we will host national, regional and local touring music and comedy acts, solidifying our position as a Cottonwood mapmaker destination."

Most recently, a church was located at 1 S. Main St.; it was a paint store for a while and a billiards hall a while back.

The Main Stage brings together the concepts and skills of the three who will lend their expertise to a special environment that will be attractive for a variety of uses and entertainment.

Riffel describes herself as a traveler, photographer and writer who sprang from Sedona Red Rock High School, graduated from the University of Arizona and then traveled the world, teaching English in far-flung places as Thailand and the Dominican Republic, traveling in Southeast Asia and Europe. She has also been a manger of a million dollar company in Oregon.

Joshua Bartosh is a successful promoter, bar owner and "mixologist.' He has been the general manager at the Rendezvous in Old Town and bar owner in Tempe's Mill Avenue and Prescott's Whisky Row.

The third side to the triangle is Christopher Robin of the Christopher Robin Band, who has toured with the likes of Gregg Allman, Jessi Colter and Tanya Tucker and has shared the stage with B.B King, Ziggy Marley and Peter Frampton.

His friend Shooter Jennings invited him to join him when he played as a headliner for Rhythm & Ribs in Cottonwood.

"I fell in love with this area. I'm still on the road for months out of the year, but I like landing back in the Verde Valley. I wanted a place to play with the house sound system and a room and stage created for live performances. The Main Stage became an opportunity for me to combine two decades worth of club, theater, festival and arena experience into a venue where I would feel proud inviting my friends on tour buses to come and play."

Bartosh says there will be fun to be had. "We want to feature, celebrate and put fun spins on classic cocktails, in addition to supporting the local wines and beers we all love."

Riffel says, "It is my ultimate goal to open as the community event center rather than just a bar; something that the entire community can be part of and be proud of. When we open we will have plans of the entire project on display, so neighbors can come in and see what the ultimate vision will look like,

A big stumbling block for the entire layout has been parking. But Rebecca says plans are in the works to remedy that.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Sunday, January 19, 2014
Article comment by: Slater Slater

Midget Wrestlers that sing comes to mind.Bet
you fill the place.Just saying lol
Perhaps the Chap would be more fitting when

Posted: Sunday, January 19, 2014
Article comment by: Qanni Katifa

The noise is horrendous for the poor seniors that are next door. It doesn't resemble music at all. It is something between war and a construction site. I complained to the co-owner Riffle and she said if it was too noisy for the old folks they should move to a residential area. Reminded me of the queen that said if the people don't have bread, let them eat cake! Same lack of concern for others, same lack of morals. Perhaps Riffle will have the same fate as Marie?:

Posted: Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Article comment by: violet rose

so great! this town needs more excitement! what about a roller rink! and a putt putt golf course! I hope this venue takes into consideration we dont all like country music. Id be happy to see urban music acts, and well known dance music deejays! Also comedians from all spectrums. Thanks guys for doing this! Much Luck and Love!!

Posted: Friday, May 10, 2013
Article comment by: Ali Ramsay

Can't wait for the Grand Opening. Will be attending most of the events!

Posted: Monday, May 6, 2013
Article comment by: Lynda Kuglitsch

Great news! Should really add to the commerce of this area!

Posted: Monday, May 6, 2013
Article comment by: concerned about the noise

Well, we really hope these folks have taken into consideration who thier neighbors are, they happen to be a senior community right next door. We really hope that they have done ample soundproofing inside. And we really hope they do NOT plan on having thier doors open for the noise to carry. You may give it a fancy name but a bar is a bar. Live music, late nights and add booze to the mix means one thing, a bunch of drunks. But since the city of Cottonwood is only intrested in more revenue rather than noise polution we'll have to wait and see how this bar stacks up to the others.

Posted: Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Article comment by: Slater Slater

Great news. I won't have to carry the load all by

Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Article comment by: danny montana

thank you..thank you, thank you..yeeehaaaw!

Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Article comment by: flaco comir

Dadgone Bakersfield meets Cottonwood!


Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Article comment by: Rosemarie Babcock

I've been waiting for something like this since my hubby and I first moved here back in '03. The Verde Valley has needed something like this for a long time, and it's something that will bring good vibes to the community.

Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Article comment by: Very Excited

I can't wait to see what shows you bring in. Thank you!

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