Vacant building turned music venue by Corner Concerts

Our friends at Corner Concerts are always looking for interesting and unexpected places to turn into live music venues. This month's concert will be in one of Macon's vacant buildings -the former Shriners Temple on Poplar Street, just across the street from City Hall. Andrew Eck shares with us what inspired the choice of the Shriner Temple as the concert setting.

We, as Maconites, are told that Macon has great building stock, yet we only see the same few buildings in our weekly routine. Many of the ‘great’ buildings of Macon’s history are vacant, condemned or out of sight. Overgrown with bushes or boarded up, these buildings are easy to overlook. And without a legitimate reason to go into these buildings or without a vision for their potential, that’s all we see and think of them as – boarded-up buildings on our way to work.

Macon is a city of history. We relive it and create it in the same stroke. And our buildings tell the best stories of the past. I live two doors down from where Greg Allman and Cher lived when they were married and across from the original site of the first women’s college in the world. We’ve seen that if we don’t use these brick-and-mortar story tellers, we lose them –at the price of our history and heritage.

Well here is my shameless plug, Corner Concerts is hosting its next concert in the Shriner Temple on 745 Poplar St. It’s that weird Egyptian building that sits across from City Hall next to Rosa Parks. We’ve all wondered what exactly used to be there. A bank? Secret Society?  Built in 1929, the Shriner Temple was the largest auditorium outside of Atlanta at the time. I'm sure you've noticed the lotus flowers and other Egyptian symbols on the building. The story goes that in the 1920s, there was so much press about the ‘Tomb of Tutankhamen’ that the Shriners used hieroglyphs from the tomb as the model for the paintings on the walls.

This unique building will host Maconites, new and old, for one night when Corner Concerts sets up shop on December 6 at 7:30 with New Madrid, White Violet and 100 Watt Horse playing. Tickets are available at for $10. Come out and explore one of those vacant buildings you've always noticed and never entered –with a beer in hand.

-Andrew Eck, Corner Concerts