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Success Stories

Jude’s Old Town

RVCDF provided the seed money necessary for Jude’s to open and survive a tough first year in business.

Jude’s Old Town is Rainier Beach’s family-friendly neighborhood bar, featuring great food, draft beer, Washington state wines and locally-distilled craft cocktails. It uses primarily locally-sourced ingredients and everything is made on-premise. Its cocktail program is creative and unmatched in Southeast Seattle.

Founded in 2014 by longtime South Seattle resident Mason “Beau” Hebert and his wife Courtney—Jude’s is the sister location to Lottie’s Lounge in historic Columbia City—another favorite community watering hole.

“I live in the Rainier Beach area and wanted to provide a good community-focused place in my own neighborhood,” says Beau. “I named the bar after my mother, Judi, who was the ultimate party host and a great cook in her own right.”

Jude’s offers a unique blend of upscale cocktails and down-home food, which Beau says is what he likes most about his business—aside from the customers, of course.

“We always wanted a place nearby with good food, cold beer and a laid-back environment,” he says. “So we dropped anchor on 57th Avenue South with the ambition of becoming Rainier Beach’s go-to, family-friendly neighborhood bar.”

But they couldn’t do it alone. The couple needed seed money and financing for equipment purchasing and building out the space and were familiar with RVCDF through the Columbia City Business Association.

“The loan was crucial to getting our business off the ground,” said Beau. “The interest rate is very fair and RVCDF is easier to deal with than a traditional bank.”

After a difficult first year, Jude’s is doing much better. In the summer of 2017, Jude’s extended its business to Rainier Beach’s first “parklet” created on the sidewalk in front of the bar—Streatery at Jude’s. Working in cooperation with a grant from the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, community donations and RVCDF as fiscal sponsor, the Streatery offers a public artful dining space for neighbors to relax and enjoy.

“I think the thing that sets me apart from my competitors is my creativity and ability to think outside the box,” says Mason.

He hopes to expand someday, if and when one of the adjacent units becomes vacant, and would also like to see RVCDF expand its territory and help even more business owners like him.


4 new full-time jobs created
4 new part-time jobs created
100% increase in revenue
100% increase in net profits

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