Thistle & Mirth Turns to Patrons for Help With Pizza Rebranding
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The owners of Thistle and Mirth are fundraising to rebrand to the bar's "nerdy and artsy roots" with the addition of pizza.
An Indiegogo has been launched to raise funds for the revision, rebranding, and reopening of the establishment after a stabbing on Thanksgiving Eve closed its doors. The plan is to reduce the footprint to the "old Mirth," install a pizza oven, emphasize games and artsy community events, focus on well-curated craft beer, and have earlier hours.
"After 13 years, we don't want to give up so easily," owners Joad Bowman and Austin Oliver wrote on social media.
The fundraiser aims to collect $8,000 to support the effort and has raised more than $3,800 so far. The owners have been deep cleaning, repairing, and painting the former bar and ramen restaurant.
"As many of you know we had a violent incident invade our space on November 23, and we made the decision to close our doors due to the rise in criminal activity in Pittsfield nightlife," the fundraiser reads.
"For us, the expansion that COVID forced on us had already taken a toll on our spirits, and the wallets. But we were making progress and had come almost out of the deep end. Until the incident."
Over the following week, Bowman and Oliver decided they could not cut ties with Pittsfield that easily and would try to move past this with a transformed space for the people who have supported Thistle and Mirth in its 13 years of operation.
Last week, Thistle and Mirth's ramen menu was moved to sister eatery Lulu's Tiny Grocery. Lulu's, located inside Crawford Square on North Street, was opened as a breakfast and lunch spot last year.
"Mirth will rise again, but we can't do it alone," the two wrote. "It is only with great reluctance that we are using this channel for fundraising, and are only doing it because of the tremendous circumstances and because we are attaching perks and rewards for those who would like them."
Closing on the busiest day of the year and the time following has reportedly "decimated" the restaurant's accounts and brought them to the brink.
"We are returning to our nerdy and artsy roots: board games, communal events, safe closing hours….a pizza party!" they wrote.
The fundraiser has multiple levels of giving for larger donations that include a menu item in your name, a keychain, or even a pizza party around the donor's birthday.
Tags: bars, taverns, business changes, pizza, restaurants,