Wednesday nights at have been some of the busiest nights at the cafe for the last five-plus years during St. Pete for Peace's weekly movie night. That may soon change after Bohemia's new owner has told St. Pete for Peace that they can no longer show movies in its outdoor patio.
In an article in Creative Loafing, Bohemia's new owner, Lou Aldano, said he took his 9-year-old daughter to the outside patio during last week and began watching a screening of the critically-acclaimed documentary, American: The Bill Hicks Story.
He told the magazine that it was so offensive he told St. Pete for Peace that they are not welcome back.
“It was the most vulgar movie I’ve ever seen in my life,” Aldano told Creative Loafing. “I don’t think they were aware of how inappropriate it was.”
Earlier this week, St. Pete for Peace sent out a statement voicing its displeasure with the new ownership's stance.
"The new owners of Cafe Bohemia oppose our message, so they told us we can no longer show films there on Wednesday evenings," the statement said. "It's unfortunate that the new proprietors are not on board with peace and justice and don't value healthy discussion and building community."
to Aldano after running the shop for more than eight years.
"I can be OK with letting things go, but I just hope that it is still available for people to feel comfortable," Neal told Patch during his last day at Bohemia. He said he loved Bohemia because of the artists, musicians and community interaction that happened there.
The word "bohemia" means, "a person, as an artist or writer, who live and acts free of regard for conventional rules and practices."
In an ironic twist, Aldano told Creative Loafing that the cafe will be going more mainstream and family friendly with a focus on live music.
St. Pete for Peace said the pending move is a chance to possibly move the weekly movie series indoors so events would not be subject to the weather.
Even the menu has gone “mainstream” as well by adding bar and grill favorites such as mac and cheese, beef nachos and hamburgers.
Currently, St. Pete for Peace is looking for another location to host its meetings.
"So, for now our Wednesday films are on hold until we find a new location," the statement continued. "In the meantime, if you know of a potential place with owners that value socially conscious films and can accommodate about 20-50 people, please let us know."
St. Pete for Peace said aside from the free advertising, its member accounted for around $10,000 a year in business for Cafe Bohemia.
"It will take a collaborative effort to find a suitable location, but the show must go on, so we will be back to having weekly movies soon."