What we hear most at APEX Art & Culture Center is, "I've driven past this building for decades and never knew what it was."
The storied past of 1611 Everett Avenue
The building in which APEX Art & Culture resides is one of five grand buildings from Everett's colorful past. This gem began its journey in 1921 when the Knights of Columbus opened it as a Civic Center, Everett's first.
The early 1900s were tough on Everett and by 1920 the city needed something to give its residents a place to gather. The Knights of Columbus provided that when it built the Memorial Building and Civic Center complete with pool, gymnasium, theater and grand ballroom.
Just six short years later, the Knights were forced to sell this property, and the new owners were the Free Masons, who owned it until 1992 when a couple bought the building and turned it into Club Broadway, five floors of music, clubs and restaurants. Eventually, Club Broadway lost its appeal and a casino and off-track betting became the building's lifeblood.
Then the building went silent for about a decade.
In May 2022, John Carswell purchased this grand historic building. The story goes he walked the building on a Tuesday and purchased it on a Thursday. Knowing the building would be the perfect setting for The DogTown Collection, he celebrated the purchase by sharing the vision for the building and Collection with a "Not-So-Grand Opening, an invite-only gathering of friends and acquaintances, who by the end of the night were WOW-ed by the story and the possibilities.
Since May 2022, the vision has morphed and the possibilities have been developing, but one thing that hasn't changed is the mission of bringing awareness to The DogTown Collection and its artists, all while having ridiculous amounts of fun.