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The Cellar recognized as Bright Spot for recent improvements

  • In 2019, Michelle and Paul Stokes gave Carbondale's subterranean bar a new, above-ground space, but then the pandemic hit.

    In 2019, Michelle and Paul Stokes gave Carbondale's subterranean bar a new, above-ground space, but then the pandemic hit.
    Courtesy of Keep Carbondale Beautiful

 
Submitted by Anne Krippenstapel
Keep Carbondale Beautiful
updated: 1/24/2022 7:54 AM

The recent efforts of Michelle and Paul Stokes, owners of The Cellar in downtown Carbondale, have won them a Bright Spot Award from Keep Carbondale Beautiful.

The couple renovated the brick building and outdoor space between Cristaudo's and The Cellar beginning in the spring of 2019. The work took six months.

The year 2020 hit the world hard, and there was no ribbon cutting or celebration for the new outdoor beer garden and building.

What it did, though, was provide a safer space for customers to congregate in a familiar, well-ventilated atmosphere.

While operations have been unpredictable, due to CDC guidelines and shutdowns, the small area has provided safe, community activity space. Pop-up events supporting local artists brought small, safe, public gatherings to the people of Carbondale.

"We wanted a beautiful, inviting space where people of all ages feel comfortable hanging out," Michelle says. Leashed, well behaved pets are welcomed as well.

The Keep Carbondale Beautiful Board selects businesses or residences to receive the Bright Spot Award for enhancing the beauty of the community by means of revitalization, construction, beautification, maintenance or rehabilitation. To nominate a business or residence, call the Keep Carbondale Beautiful office at 618-525-5525 or email keepcb1326@gmail.com. Archives of past winners may be found at keepcb.org.