With February comes celebrations of all kinds, and–thanks to Valentine’s Day– the start of wedding plans. Good thing there’s a new deluxe party space in Martin City.
Martin City Opens New Event Space
By Kathy Feist
There’s a saying, “What’s old is new again.”
The old Martin City Methodist Church at the corner of 135th St. and Holmes Rd. will once again be the site for weddings and receptions.
And corporate luncheons. The list goes on.
Matt Moore, of Martin City Brewing Company fame, has purchased the 4000 sq. ft. building and renovated it into a first-class event space called The Martin.
The Martin opened early this year for a few unofficial parties and is currently taking reservations.
A Peek Inside
The old space is modernized by a black, white and gold-striped theme. But that takes a back seat to a stunning 17-foot high vaulted ceiling graced by the original arched wooden beams. The caramel-stained, polished cement floor reflects the unique chandelier lighting hanging from above.
At one end of the building is a slightly raised stage with white acoustic ceiling panels. At the other end is the entrance door with a greeting table for guest books, event props, flowers and such. Immediately to the left is a matching custom-built bar.
Two eight-foot wide French doors on the west side of the building lead guests to a future outdoor enclosed patio garden. For now, in the dead of winter, they lead to the parking lot.
Skylights, state-of-the-art sound system, wall-mounted televisions complete the main floor.
Currently Moore and his crew are working on turning the basement into a full-fledged kitchen and preparation room for wedding parties. They expect that phase to be completed in April, at which time they begin landscaping the property and painting the building exterior.
The Rehab Process
Moore purchased the building from Jim’s Wholesale Flooring in late 2014. Originally built after the 1957 tornado destruction, the church had “good bones” according to Moore. Despite that, Moore expects to put in close to $200,000 in renovation costs, not including the purchase of the building.
Moore and his wife and partner Kara were not shy about digging in and getting the work done themselves. Kara stripped off several layers of “poop color” paint from the wood beams. Different flooring materials (a result of the previous business) were torn off revealing the cement floor. The floor was stained and then sanded and restained before meeting Kara’s approval.
Kara’s brother Ryan Lamfers, a sculpture arts instructor at the University of West Georgia, crafted the unique metal chandeliers and metal logo cut-outs found throughout the building.
Moore is very thankful for his crew consisting of “Big Chris” Havens, Brad Stonner, and Hugh King for the many hours and hard labor they have put into making his idea a reality.
There is no question that Moore is a man who chases his ideas. “My bank account is not keeping up with my mind,” he jokes.
When Moore was 15 years old, he and his cousin Dave VanNoy had their own vending machine business at his grandfather R.C. VanNoy’s restaurants, Jess & Jim’s and RC’s. They were in charge of the small gum and candy machines.
Moore eventually started a landscaping company while in his teens, primarily mowing, which he still owns.
In 2010, while Moore was searching for a building for his landscaping business, he and friend Chance Adams discussed the possibility of a microbrewery. Today, the buildings at 500 E 135 St. are the successful Martin City Brewering Company and Pizza+Taps, both tightly packed on any given night. If there was open space, it would be in the brewery warehouse. That spot became a unique place to host parties.
In late 2014, Moore began distributing his bottled beer throughout the area. At that point, the event space began to get cramped. With the decision to can the beer came the decision to get a new event space due to space issues.
What Was Once Old Is Now New
Oddly enough, Moore was once an owner of the old church building. Prior to Jim’s Wholesale Flooring, his grandfather owned the building and leased it out to the Martin City Melodrama. VanNoy had deeded 1/16th of 2/3rds ownership of the building to Moore and his cousins. When it sold in 1999, Moore had a little college money.
Now the Moores have come full circle, providing a future for their children and themselves. And maybe helping others start a fresh future together as well.
To tour or book The Martin, call Kara Moore at 816-268-2222.