It’s the site of one of Seattle’s most well-known shootings, but for thousands of others, Café Racer is a place for food and entertainment. On Thursday, it reopens in the University District.
Jeff Ramsey is the new owner, and he says this place means too much to the community to just let it fade away.
“My wife and I talked about it, and we felt that it was really important to keep Café Racer alive as a living memorial to the victims of the shooting, and to the arts and culture in this area,” Ramsey said. “These kinds of places are disappearing from Seattle’s map, so we worked with the previous owner Kurt Geissel to bring it back to life.”
“I think there’s some people who go Café Racer and are intimidated by the thought of what happened here, but mostly people feel a lot of love and gratitude that we’re here that we’re re-opening,” Ramsey continued. “There are some people that come by sometimes and say they haven’t been back since the shooting and they feel a lot of emotion, but we also get people that are grateful, like these people who lost their life their dear friends, this is a place they can come to remember them.”
Ramsey spoke extensively about honoring the work of the previous owner while also throwing in a few new twists.
“We want to keep the vision that Kurt Geissel had, this vision of art and community, sort of this lovely, quirky little space. And we want to dial it up a little bit,” Ramsey said. “We want it to be what it was. We want it to be this hub of arts and culture, a community where people can meet, like ‘Hey, let’s meet at Café Racer.”
Ramsey is planning a four-day Grand Opening celebration that will include, artists, musicians, and food. If you’re interested in hearing more about the plans, click here for more details.