First Avenue: Fans remember Prince at iconic club

Published 4:49 AM EDT, Fri April 22, 2016

Story highlights

Prince died on Thursday. He was 57

Fans gathered at First Avenue in Minneapolis to remember him

(CNN) —  

Hours after learning of pop icon Prince’s death, hundreds of fans – many wearing purple – shut down the street in front of the famous First Avenue nightclub in Minneapolis for an all-night dance party.

Some cried as they sang songs and shared stories. They talked about how much Prince meant to them and how he showed the music industry that you don’t need to be from the East or West coast to make it big.

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The downtown music venue helped launch the careers of many local musicians, including Prince, and was featured extensively in the movie “Purple Rain.”

A testament to his popularity, the gathered fans ranged in age from their 20s to 80s.

Here are some of their thoughts:

Allison Werthmann-Radnich choked up as she remembered Prince.

“Memories of Prince and his music are the background and cornerstone of pretty much every important event in my life. Prom, weddings, New Year’s Eve celebrations, concerts at First Avenue. His music was incredible. It was heartfelt. It was youthful and funky and rock ‘n roll all in one.

“He was an artist that I looked up to because he never compromised his artistic integrity and that was really inspiring for me. And he had success because of it and not in spite of it.