Editorial: Good riddance, Junker’s Mill

Published 8:39 am Wednesday, August 31, 2022

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It’s like another era has passed for us old timers.

EnergyUnited, formerly Crescent Electric, formerly Davie Electric – has moved out of Mocksville.

Gone. See you later.

The company that started here in 1939 to extend electrical service into rural areas is no longer here.

EnergyUnited’s property in Mocksville, including Junker’s Mill, is for sale. And considering its location and size, it will be sold.

The closure was inevitable as our move from a mobile, person-to-person society is moving more and more toward one that stares at a cell phone while paying a bill rather than interacting with a person; a society that negotiates through a phone tree rather than explain a problem to a person. That’s sad in some ways, but pretty darn convenient, too.

It will be interesting to see what happens on that piece of property, bordered by Valley Road and Salisbury Street, and still a part of the downtown area.

One thing is for sure, thanks to folks like the late Bill Foster, Tami Langdon and Mike Gunning – some pretty amazing concerts and events took place at Junker’s Mill. Remember the Marshall Tucker Band? The Tams?

Foster, then a town commissioner, was right in suggesting the location for a music venue. It was a perfect slope for an ampitheater. The energy company allowed the town to use the site, which was good. The bad part was the site was never improved. Parts of the building were falling in, with only a stage and small storage room available, and they weren’t anything to brag about.

Looking out from the stage, Mike Cross said it best when playing a concert there: “Welcome to Mocksville Asphalt University.” He was looking at three parking lots and a street.

Yes, the site was right, but to have been successful, it would have to have been developed into an ampitheater, not just using the parking lots for seating. Concerts on the street are more popular.

And that’s just what the town is doing. Phatt City and
Envision will perform from 4-8 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 as part of a Summer Beach Days promotion.

See you there. The stage will be on the street – right above what’s left of Junker’s Mill.

– Mike Barnhardt