When friend and former Houston Press colleague John Nova Lomax told me about a place he rode by in the Heights called "Partay Garage," I was immediately intrigued. I rushed to the Web site and it appeared to literally be a garage you could rent to throw a "partay." Perhaps it was the fact that I was looking at the Web site on my iPhone or that it was closing in on midnight New Year's Eve after a few partay drinks of my own, but I misread.
Unfortunately, it isn't a garage for a partay after all, but rather a showroom for one enterprising Houstonian's invention to help turn YOUR garage into a "partay" zone. Not quite as exciting, but as owner Paul Reinhardt put it, "Never Leave the Party with PARTAYGARAGE."
The concept is fairly simple: Thick plastic sheets attach to your garage outside the garage door, helping to keep the area inside cooler or warmer than the outside but opening it up to the surroundings. "Pool partiess were dragging too much mess in the house," Reinhardt said in an e-mail. "I cleaned up and air conditioned the garage but it was still disconnected from the parties. Strip Doors came to mind, but I couldn't find them ready to go in a pop on pop off fashion, so I just fabricated my own."
Reinhardt rents the garage on 22nd where he has his showroom open on weekends and advertises with big signs that say "PARTAYGARAGE.COM." He said that the panels can be put on doors as well, but his primary market is garages, and he has no typical customer. "One person observed that PARTAYGARAGE to them spelled Freedom, Freedom for Moms (no house mess) Freedom for Dads (comfortable escape, close but not far away from the honey-do demands) Freedom for Kids/Tweens (comfortable fun space where they can get a little wild)," he said.
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So, while it may not have been the "partay" garage of my dreams, for one Houston entrepreneur, it comes pretty damn close.