Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The City's Lights

Last Wednesday evening I set out to the snowy streets of downtown St. Paul Street. On my way, I started to think about how relationships develop between people simply because they are part of the scenery in downtown. We see one another on our way to destinations unknown, we smile or wave and there it happens.
That is how I came to know Sue Ann Chmay and Steve Smith. Together, the two own City Lights Restaurant and Lounge and since opening their doors just over a year ago have settled into their restaurant quite nicely. 
Inside, the long narrow space is lined with tall booths, cushioned benches and warm low lighting. On that evening the atmosphere was coupled with the acoustic sounds of grass roots, folk and rock. Local singer songwriters Jesse T. Reid and Bryson Waind were kicking off their Ontario tour, “The Bruce and the Shield.” 
Jesse and Bryson are individual artists who frequent downtown’s performance roster. Bryson has released two albums; his most recent titled 2009 Grape Country and Jesse has released his third, Dumb as Chance. 
The two artists differ in musical style but share a similar vision that will take them to the wintry February roads.
Musicians, songwriters and those crafting original work draw a refreshing alternative to the sometimes-redundant cover band and painful spins of top 40. I say, let’s pay more thought to these flavourful performers.


  1. Shannon, this blog makes me want to live in St.Catharines. You make it seem so cool.

  2. Shannon,

    I have also experienced City Lights and had a great time. I only went for dinner but I am pretty sure I met Sue the owner that night and she was very friendly. I have recommended this place to many of my friends because of the atmosphere and the great accommodations.

  3. This place sounds great. I agree it's nice to go somewhere and hear a band with real original talent, it can help set the mood for the entire restaurant.

  4. Although I don't go downtown much anymore because well, to be honest my friends and I concluded that we are now just too old for a downtown overrun with a bunch of drunk 19 year olds. But this post gives me hope, maybe my friends and I can rekindle our love of St. Paul with your recommendation of City Lights.

  5. Well to first comment on Ryan's post; making someone want to leave Welland is not a hard sell. You do make St.Catharine's seem interesting and a place people would want to check out.