Hero Plumbing, Heating & Cooling has announced that the four community gathering spaces it operates across Minneapolis will close by the end of the year.
The Uptown-based company opened the venues to provide free spaces for nonprofits and community groups, but says it is closing them down because of recent incidents of people "breaking rules" at the facilities.
One of them, at 514 Lowry Avenue in Northeast Minneapolis, has already closed its doors, with the other three closing by Dec. 31.
The remaining three are at Cedar Lake Road and Penn in Bryn Mawr, at 54th and Nicollet in Windom, and in South Uptown at 36th and Bryant.
Hero owner Josh Savage told BMTN: "The decision to shut down our community gathering spaces was a very tough one for us, and it was a decision we did not take lightly.
"Over the years, we have touched many lives in these communities and are very proud to have made a positive impact on everyone who enjoyed the spaces."
"After five amazing years, we had incidents recently of people breaking rules at the facilities and taking advantage of the community service we were offering," he added.
"It caused us to reevaluate the risk associated with keeping these spaces open. It saddened me to say that it was a risk we could no longer take."
Hero says the venues have hosted more than 8,000 events in the past five years, and all existing bookings between now and the end of the year will be honored.
Savage was raised in south Minneapolis until the age of 10, when his family moved to Eagan. He bought Hero along with his wife and co-owner Sheree in 2010 from his father, Pete, who himself bought it from the Ridler family in 1982.