"It's more than a gig for us," he said. "This is like our third public show, but some of us used to hang out at Common Grounds. It was a good place for kids to go and gave them something to do besides stay out on the streets and do drugs."
Gunno said Common Grounds and the other all-ages clubs of the time were an important proving and training ground for young bands. It also put people together and helped musicians start bands.
Metal vocalist Lee Harrah, who isn't planning on performing Saturday, said one of his first shows at an established venue was at Common Grounds.
"It was fantastic," he said. "You didn't see floor in that place. The crowd was just crazy and just going there, you saw punks with Minor Threat t-shirts, metalheads with Metallica t-shirts and preppies. From what I remember, everybody got along."
Harrah said the night of his band's show, about an hour before they went on, a kid ran through the front door and begged for help before he was dragged back out into the street and beaten. At the time, he thought it was cool that the police got called to one of his shows. Looking back, not so much.
Through it's entire run, Common Grounds struggled, both financially and with rising crime in the downtown area. (It's location, now home to Tobacco Discount Store, was near both the Transit Mall and Brawley Walkway.) After the club closed, owner Bob Webb told the Gazette he never made a living from the business and wound up loaning it cash to keep it afloat.
The club is still missed. Periodically, teen clubs in the area have sprung up, but none have had any staying power. Harrah, Gunno and Rogers said that's unfortunate and that Kanawha County really needs a place dedicated to all-age shows.
"Part of what made Common Grounds great is that it was a place where kids could meet kids," Gunno said.
"It was just a good place to go," Rogers said. "It was better than hanging out on the streets. I still like all-age shows. The energy is just so much better, and everybody is out to hear the music not just get drunk."
Rogers said she hoped Saturday's reunion would be something that could be continued and maybe grow. Currently unemployed, she said she was doing this more out of love than to make a buck.
"Hopefully somebody else will take it over who knows more stuff," she said.
Reach Bill Lynch at ly...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-5195.