Downtown Mesa’s Nile Theater & Café gets new look

By Kelly Mixer,

The Historic Nile Theater in downtown Mesa, 105 W. Main St., is getting a new look for 2018. It will introduce a new logo and website that incorporates the music venue and café under one name and brand image.

The Nile renovation rendering. (Boyd Harrington/Special to

“The logo and joining of the café and theater are final seal on the work we have been doing since taking over the space seven years ago,” said Michelle Donovan of the Mantooth Group. “The rebranded ties all our efforts together into one complete package and gives us room to grow into what The Nile really has always been – a focal point of entertainment and community for downtown Mesa.”

The café formerly known as Volstead Public House is now The Nile Café. It continues to feature a near-100 percent plant-based menu of pastries, sandwiches and salads. Donovan developed the menu based on her non-meat diet when vegan choices were less readily available.

To celebrate, Donovan recently hosted a show featuring Senses Fail, Reggie and The Full Effect, and Have Mercy. It was almost like a reunion tour of bands that have performed at The Nile over the past 20 years.

“These groups bring back a lot of memories from coming to The Nile when I was in high school and college, and now as the owner,” she said.

The Nile Theater opened in 1924 as the Valley’s first and largest movie house. In 1951, the theater closed, and the building served as a clothing store, nightclub, dinner theater and even a church until returning to its entertainment roots. By the end of the 20th century, The Nile was known for its hardcore, punk metal and rock shows. In 2010, the Mantooth Group took ownership and management of The Nile where it continues to be a leader in Arizona’s music scene. The Nile is comprised of its main stage venue The Theater; the 300-person Underground, and the Café serving coffee and vegan dishes.

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