Lorenzo’s Cafe is shutting down after 24 years of hosting musical acts in Ashton Creek. (Photo: Lorenzoscafe.com)

Lorenzo’s cafe shutting down after 24 years in North Okanagan

The storied venue will host its last show on Oct. 26

The North Okanagan’s music scene is losing one of its hidden gems.

Lorenzo’s Cafe is closing its doors after hosting award-winning musical acts for the past 24 years.

“I dreamt it, I designed it and I built it,” says Lorenzo’s owner Lorne Costley.

Costley built the cafe out of an old school house from 1919 at 901 Mabel Lake Road, a short drive east of Enderby. He put major renovations into the building, including installing lanes form a bowling alley in Lumby to serve as the stage and dance floor.

“There’s still the bowling marks for placing the pins,” he says.

It was always a feat to run a music venue in such a remote area. With bands from all over the province – and the world – enjoying the spot for its superb acoustics and atmosphere, Costley defied the odds for many years, but he says the times have caught up with him.

“It’s a difficult challenge doing it out here, it’s not easy to get people out here in the woods,” Costley says. “It’s a beautiful place to live, and a hard place to make a living.”

For Costley, some nights it was a wonder that the music acts he brought in garnered so little attention.

“That’s one of the reasons I’m closing. I had an eight-piece killer band from Winnipeg playing here on a Thursday night in August, and there’s like six people in the audience.

“They don’t know about it or it’s just too far to drive or they have Netflix. It’s just the way of the world.”

Though the end has come to a great personal journey for Costley, he says he’ll look forward to having time to travel and woodwork, and he’ll cherish the memories he’s made.

“I’ve enjoyed every minute of it and it’s been a great adventure and experience building and running it.”

Lorenzo’s still has time for a last hurrah or two. Costley has four more shows scheduled, the first being this Friday when a “guitar explosion” will hit the stage. Two groups – Sons of Bitumen and Guitar you Experienced – will join forces for a night of psychedelic, rock, blues, jazz, and anything else you can imagine.

After that, on October 11 an already sold-out show will feature Daniel Champagne, an Australian born guitarist who has been selling out shows around the world. On October 13 Lorenzo’s will host British rock and blues artist Michael Charles.

The grand finale is a a show with the Legendary Lake Monsters on Oct. 26 – a Halloween costume party with vocalists, a full band and a haunted-looking set.

READ MORE: Celtic rock group to enter Spotlight in Vernon

READ MORE: Juno award-winning artist delivers early Christmas present to Okanagan

Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

Small Business

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

$173K to support Okanagan seniors amid pandemic

United Way announces more funding for frontline programs

Vernon couple support Kidney Walk despite setbacks

Jacqueline Marioni has had two kidney transplants; both organs have rejected or are rejecting her

Vernon Vipers land prep school blueliner

Griffen Barr, from Nanaimo, was captain of Shawnigan Lake club in 2019-20

Okanagan home sales increase over last month, still below 2019 numbers: OMREB

Sales, listings see increase over May’s numbers but dwindle in comparison to 2019

Suspicious activity on Predator Ridge bike trails

A rock deliberately placed on a hazardous corner results in bolstered security, cameras

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

Princeton RCMP sergeant kills cougar threatening residential neighborhood

An RCMP officer shot and killed a cougar, close to a residential… Continue reading

Pilot project approved: Penticton to allow alcohol in outdoor spaces

For almost two hours, council debated the proposed pilot project, before eventually passing it 4-2

Drugs, machete found in truck with stolen plate driven by Salmon Arm man

Chase RCMP arrest driver and have vehicle towed

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

Top cop calls video of Kelowna Mountie striking suspect ‘concerning’

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

Most Read