Covid ushered in a period of stagnation for the punk community. While many saw their venues close, others snatched up opportunities and hashed out plans to create new ones. Jason Overmiller was one of those individuals, but he took a different approach to his planning process by including the scene from the very beginning.
At a roundtable meeting, which included the bar owners and local band members, they worked together to create the vision that would ultimately become The Kennel at West York Inn in York, PA. Even the name and logo tie into the community with the local high school dubbed the Bull Dogs and York itself being known as the “White Rose City.”
Initial renovations on the former pool table room took about two months to transform the area into its full stage glory.
While the room was being remodeled, Jason got to work on other things. Until taking on this project, he had no previous knowledge or experience with booking and promoting shows. He only saw the need and wanted to provide his friends in local bands with a home. And like with most endeavors, hands on provides the best training.
Within six months, the venue went from hosting local shows to entertaining traveling and out of state bands. Then in October of last year, Jason caught word through contacts in the local metal scene that one of the original NWOBHM bands, Raven, needed a tour stop after its original venue fell through. With only a week and a half notice, not only did he pull off a successful show, but he packed the room. Seizing this opportunity has had a positive impact on the future of the venue.
Currently, The Kennel at West York Inn is hosting weekly shows ranging from $10 local bands to nationwide touring acts and has a pretty stacked schedule for the rest of the year. Recently, Paperback Tragedy played a show with BIFF and Rutabaga Suicide. The stage provided plenty of space for the entire band to move around and jam to their full potential and the sound was some of the best available for the venue size. Whichever band you are there to see, you will also see Jason as he attends and supports all shows that he books.
Check out the venue's Event Page for information on upcoming shows. There is plenty of music and even a comedy show happening over the next few weeks.
The Kennel at West York Inn is a 150-175 capacity music venue located at 1400 West Market Street West, York, PA 17404. Please contact email@example.com for booking information.