NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — One of Connecticut’s legendary music clubs is reopening after a year-long closure due to the pandemic, with the help of the federal government.
Toad’s Place celebrated with its first live music, a jazz duo, Friday along with Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Rep. Rosa DeLauro. The club had been closed since March 2020. Blumenthal called the club “iconic."
Toad’s opened in the 1970s and has been a hot spot for local bands, but also has hosted acts such as the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, U2 and, more recently, Cardi B and Kendrick Lamar.
The club was awarded a $1 million grant through the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program. Venues that lost at least 90% of their revenues during the pandemic are eligible.
DeLauro said the federal government has received about 13,000 applications for aid from entertainment venues and that it appears there is enough money to provide support to those that qualify.
Catherine Marx, Connecticut district director for the Small Business Administration, said grants had been prioritized for the venues that had been hardest hit by the pandemic, and that Toads is one of 10 Connecticut venues to receive funds so far, the New Haven Register reported.
“We’ve missed our performing arts. We’ve missed going out,” Marx said. “And it is just wonderful to be on, again, this legendary stage to congratulate Toad’s and thank everybody involved for allocating the money, working through the program.”
Owner Brian Phelps said the first concerts at Toad’s after the reopening likely will be held in late August.