SickthingsUK: Alicecooper'stown

Alice Cooperstown (or just 'Cooperstown') was the famous sports bar/restaurant in Phoenix, AZ. Opening on December 19th 1998 it finally closed on October 22nd 2017. Two attempts have been made to open in other cities, in Denver and Cleveland, but both failed leaving only the original Phoenix Cooperstown. The venue had two small stages which hosted local bands and the occasion special event featuring bigger names, including Alice. The walls are covered in both Alice Cooper and sports memorabilia and the serving staff wear Cooper-like makeup. Alice used to occasionally visit the restaurant when he was in town, and often used it as the venue for interviews for various TV shows over the years. The resturant was featured in several travelogue shows including 'Man Vs Food' and "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations".

There is was an official Cooperstown website for many years this was removed shortly after the restaurant closed.

Cooper'stown Announcement

In late 1997, it was announced that Alice was going to open his own sports bar in Phoenix.

The legendary shock rocker is planning to open a sports bar in Arizona, called 'Alice Cooper'stown'. which the man himself claims will be the "Taj Mahal of sports bars". The bar should open shortly in Cooper's home town of Phoenix. And in typical Alice fashion, the bar are planning to start up their own special hall of fame to celebrate "weird, wonderful and wacky" sports stars of the past!
(Kerrang!, December 6th 1997)

In a vacant lot on Jackson Street, the music from Alice Cooper's "Feed My Frankenstein" filled the afternoon air. Smoke seeped from around the steel door on the side of a building as two ghouls stepped out, followed by Cooper. It was the groundbreaking of his Coopers'town, a restaurant that will be just south of America West Arena. "This is going to be the oldest restaurant in Phoenix 100 years from now. We are going to make this our legacy," said Cooper, who explained why it wasn't built in time for baseball: "Getting a tour together is about a hundred times easier than putting a restaurant together." The eatery will be a cross between the All-Star Sports Cafe and the Hard Rock Cafe.....
Cooper is putting together a band with other musicians in town, such as Dave Mustaine (Megadeth) and Doug Clifford (Creedence Clearwater Revival), who will perform on the restaurant's outside stage. Clifford, a self-proclaimed snowbird from Lake Tahoe, Nev., was at the groundbreaking. "When I'm in town, I'll be on drums," said Clifford, who lives in Scottsdale's Gainey Ranch. Clifford and KUPD's Dave Pratt are among the many investors in Coopers'town. Autographed baseballs were tossed out, with the first pitch going to Jerry Colangelo. "Thanks for what you're doing downtown," shouted Evening Star producer Danny Zelisko, as Colangelo threw the ball. "You've taken a lot of cheap shots. To hell with all of them." '
(Arizona Republic, March 29th 1997)

"ALICE'S PLACE: OPENING HALLOWEEN?"
One man's down time is another man's nightmare. Take Brian Weymouth, for instance. We caught up with the restaurateur (and owner of the Arizona Sand Sharks) at Sky Harbor Airport on Thursday before he hopped on a plane for L.A. He was going to see Alice Cooper perform at the House of Blues. "This is just a little R & R." said Weymouth. He said he needs a break after working non-stop on Alice Coopers'town restaurant, which was to open this month, but is being delayed because of of "poor architectural work." The building, near Bank One Ballpark, that houses the restaurant is on the Arizona and national registers of historic places. "It's been a tough project," Weymouth said. He is hoping to open the restaurant on Halloween - a perfect time for a performance by the man who made 'Welcome to My Nightmare' famous.

Interesting stuff that will be offered at Alice's new restaurant, Coopers'town:

  • ALICE'S SURVIVAL KIT
    Included in the large logoed box (a way to avoid long lines at the concession stands) with the following: 1. Alice Coopers'town Beef Jerky 2. custom roasted peanuts 3. assorted bubble gum 4. custom roasted sunflower seeds 5. Poore Bros. Potato Chips 6. soft pretzel 7. Cracker Jacks and a lemon bar for desert.
  • THE BARBECUE SAUCES OF ALICE Coopers'town
    Alice Coopers'town will offer the fans a choice of four kinds of sauces. "West Texas" (mesquite) "East Carolina" (tart and tangy with vinegar and mustard) "Kansas City" (the taste of sweet tomato and smoke) "Maui Wowie" (crushed pineapple, plum sauce and Asian spices make this a signature sauce -- possibly from the cookbook of Shep Gordon?)

The address for Coopers'town:
101 East Jackson Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85004

(Arizona Republic August 21st, 1998


The Opening

Cooper'stown opened for business on 19th December 1998 for a special VIP night and then held the public opening the following night. Both nights had many surprises. This is what Brian Nelson had to say at the time:

I'll fill in a few details of the Coopers'town opening. Friday night was primarily for some local VIPs and people involved in the restaurant in one form or another. The place looks really good. It is a sports bar. There is an Alice presence there with several posters, gold albums, photos, etc. Plans include adding more Alice stuff in the near future (including the nail jacket from the Trash tour) and more posters. There's some other rock n roll stuff there as well and lots of sports memorabilia. There are still some finishing touches that need to be made on the place in general but they wanted to get it open before the new year even if it isn't 100% ready--don't get me wrong, most people probably didn't even notice any of that.
To the person who said it was on the small side, I disagree. It's bigger than a lot of Hard Rock Cafe's I've been in. It's got an upstairs and a large outdoor patio.
LOTS of Coopers'town merchandise. Really nice. Coopers'town baseball jerseys, T-shirts, shot glasses, hats, autographed baseball bats, golf balls, key chains, etc. They will have a website soon and I'm sure they will have mail order available from it.
Alice did several songs with some locals on Friday night. Nils Lofgren (of Bruce Springsteen fame) played on a couple of songs. Dave Mustaine from Megadeth was there too. Some sports celebs., etc. The songs included 'I Saw Her Standing There', 'Under My Wheels', '18', can't remember exactly as I get the list mixed up from the next night.
Last night was the opening to the public. Good size crowd but not packed (I think the Xmas season has to be a consideration). Long story short... Michael Bruce was there. Neal Smith was there (got there later than we had expected). The two of them got on-stage with Alice and performed 'Billion Dollar Babies', '18', 'Is It My Body', 'Desperado', can't remember exactly as I get the list mixed up from the previous night, maybe 'School's Out'?
A guy from an Alice tribute band in Phoenix played bass and did very, very well. Rockin' Reggie on backup vocals too. It sounded really good. Neal on a small drum kit was awesome. Mike's tone was classic. None of this was planned or rehearsed.
(Renfield, December 1998)

... To clarify the set, before Neal arrived, Alice and Michael (with other guitarists in a jam) played "Be My Lover", "I'm Eighteen" and "School's Out"
After Neal arrived, Alice, Michael, Neal, and "Laz", who played bass for Michael for awhile in the Michael Bruce Group, played, "No More Mr. Nice Guy", "Muscle of Love", "Desperado", "Is It My Body", and "Billion Dollar Babies" and I think one other song. On that set Michael Bruce was the only guitarist.
(Jeff Jatras, 22 December 1998)


New Cooperstown opens in Denver - May 30th 2001

From Sicthings Tim in Denver:

What a night it was here in Denver with the opening of Coopers'town and a FREE performance by Alice. Got there at 5:30 and Alice hit the stage at 7:30. He was backed by a Phoenix band called The Clockpeople - actually they were pretty good. Played the classics like 'No More Mr Nice Guy', 'Billion Dollar Babies', '18', 'Under My Wheels' as well as 'Feed My Frankenstein' and 'Lost In America'. Surprisingly he also did covers of Cheap Tricks "I Want You to Want Me" and the Beastie Boys "Fight For The Right To Party" with the lead vocals being sang by Clockpeople vocalist.
The news covered the event nicely with Alice interviews on four local news channels.

Unfortunately Cooper`stown Denver closed in January 2002.

Alice doesn't live here anymore.
On Monday, Alice Coopers'town restaurant/nightclub in LoDo (Lower Downtown?) shuttered its doors. Hailed as the "place where jocks meet rock," the funky bar wasn't meeting expectations.
Coopers'town boss Brian Weymouth tells me the club's sales after 9/11 never came back and the investors "didn't see light at the end of the tunnel." He says Cooper will miss Denver, as he had some fun here. And we'll miss Cooper, too, who was an affable guy at the opening. That night he spoke to me about raising his kids, ages 20, 15 and 8. "I'm the only dad in the world that when my kids are in their rooms playing music, I bang on the door and go, "Turn that up!' "
(Denver Post)

Cooper'stown Cleveland

New Cooperstown opens in Cleveland - May 3rd 2002

Cleveland Cooperstown was located on E. 9th Street, in downtown Cleveland, across the street from Jacobs Field. it seemed rather like the 'black sheep' of the francise and very few people ever seemed to mention it. It closed after a relatively short time leaving the original Phoenix bar the only Cooper'stown left.


Original Alice Cooper'stown in Phoenix closes - October 22nd 2017

On October 22nd 2017 shocked customers arrived to find a sign on the locked doors of the original Cooper'stown restaurant. It closed without any warning. The sign on the door simply read "After 20 years as a downtown Phoenix landmark, we are very sad to announce that we are now permanantly closed. Thank you for your business and loyalty over the last 2 decades. We will miss you all."

Co-owner Shep Gordon added "We are very proud of the 20 years Cooper'stown operated in spite of everything closing around it - it was time to leave on an up note and we thank all who supported us."

Alice Cooper'stown, Alice Cooper's famed music-and-sports-themed restaurant and bar across the street from the Suns' arena in downtown Phoenix, closed Sunday.
The Valley 'shock-rock' star opened his restaurant in 1998 – when the Suns were making their 10th straight playoff appearance. In addition, the Suns were sharing the arena with the NHL's Coyotes, who had just moved to the Valley two years earlier.
The venue quickly became one of the most popular pre- and post-game destinations for the teams' combined 162 annual home games (plus playoffs) as well as those of the Diamondbacks at nearby Chase Field.
Even after the Coyotes moved to Glendale in 2003, Alice Cooper'stown continued to ride the success of the Suns, who made the playoffs five times in the next six years, including three trips to the conference finals.
Since 2010, however, downtown Phoenix's sports success – as well as the crowds at Alice Cooper'stown – have waned considerably. The Suns have failed to make the playoffs since 2010, the D-Backs since 2011 until this year.
No official explanation for the restaurant's closure was given – its Facebook page has even been deleted – but insiders had been expecting the closure to follow shortly after the D-Backs' season ended.
(Mouth by Southwest, October 23rd 2017)

A "farewell festival" was held on December 2nd featuring a dozen local bands, many of whom had presumably played at the restaurant over the years.

Thanks to Barbara Blacklace and others for these cool photos of the Phoenix Coopers'town