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The Santa Cruz Art Center was established in 1976. It was a regular venue from 1979 to 1981 for local new wave bands. The theater stage closed for remodeling in March 1981, virtually shutting down yet another alternative venue, as seats were installed on most of what was the dance floor. There were also frequent noise complaints from nearby residential neighbors, which ultimately landed in the City Attorney's office. But shows continued on a sporadic basis through 1983.

Henry Hample of The Scapegoats worked as an administrator at the Art Center (1980 - 1983) and was involved in promoting many of the shows there during that period. In late 1980 he formed a committee of himself, Rick Walker of Tao Chemical, and Lili Laser, manager of The Prisoners, to decide who got booked in a weekly series known as "Mondays at the Art Center," which ran until March 1981.

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