ARCHIVE LIBRARY

ONE OF CENLA’S MOST CREATIVE, COLORFUL CHARACTERS, VAN ROY… AN AVOYELLES TREASURE

Van Roy is the co-owner of Bailey’s on the Square, an in-demand event coordinator and realtor for Roch Michael Real Estate.

This is one of 318 Central’s favorite stories! We are privileged to know Van Roy and to share his accomplishments with all of you is absolutely the best treat ever! Enjoy …

With this issue, we want to know why people return to Central Louisiana. Was there a particular desire to move back? A singular inspiration or unforeseen circumstance? We travel to Avoyelles to profile Marksville native Van Roy, entrepreneur, realtor and one of the main proponents of the burgeoning arts and music scene in Central Louisiana. 318 Central goes way back with Roy, co-owner of special events venue and former Marksville hotspot Bailey’s on the Square. Roy owns the popular venue with his sister Catherine Roy, who opened Bailey’s in the historic, restored Bailey Theater (est. 1916) in 1999.

After twelve years as a nightclub impresario and music promoter (the Santa Fe New Mexican’s Pasatiempo magazine called him a “nightlife legend” -Sept. 2016), Roy was offered the opportunity to start a record label in San Francisco. Excited about the opportunity and feeling the need for a change, he accepted the job. A few months in, Roy saw the writing on the wall – “We simply had different visions, plus the market for selling music was changing so rapidly…it ended up being a hurry up to wait situation with every project. I felt like I was walking through quicksand. It was about this time that my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer. I saw an opportunity and I took it. I told my siblings I would come home to Marksville, care for our mother, and return to Santa Fe or Los Angeles once all was back to normal. That never happened.”

The year was 2004 and with Marksville as his base camp, Roy began working and touring with Grammy Award winning pop icon Jody Watley in addition to working with some of the world’s finest DJs and producers, managing Bailey’s (then a thriving nightclub offering everything from MTV and Playboy personalities to major Rap artists), and managing a nightclub in Santa Fe via conference calls and bi-weekly visits. Somewhere in between he obtained his Louisiana real estate license and began working alongside his sister/broker at Roch Michael Real Estate. In 2008, he was sought out by Alexandria’s critically acclaimed Christian Rock band, 2112, to manage them as they transitioned into Social Recall after a legal dispute over their original name. Roy is listed as executive producer and art director on their album “Rebirth.” The band achieved regional success and impressive airplay. Despite the band’s demise, Roy remains close to the members and has managed and continues to consult singer/songwriter, Mitch Attales.

“Gradually, I started to find my way, reconnecting with family and friends and enjoying our culture and people. Plus, I was traveling so much for work that I felt I had the best of both worlds. But in the end, I couldn’t see myself moving. I was dating someone from Houston who felt I had settled and that being here was a waste of my time. I don’t agree. I feel there’s great value to returning home and sharing what you’ve learned by traveling and working other places.”

Roy was the Top Producer for Roch Michael Real Estate in 2018 and has transformed Bailey’s on the Square into one of Cenla’s most in demand venues for private events, from wedding receptions to corporate functions. He’s a firm believer in community service and is currently president of the Marksville Chamber of Commerce, immediate past-president of the Rotary Club of Avoyelles, serves on the board of the Avoyelles Society for the Developmentally Disabled and has been a long time board member of the Avoyelles Arts Council, where he serves as co-chair of the Avoyelles Arts & Music Fest – “Louisiana’s July 4th Destination Festival!”

“I’m blessed to know and work with so many great people here in Avoyelles and Central Louisiana. There’s so much great stuff going on. I’m not saying it’s easy, but we’re here and there’s a lot of inspired entrepreneurs doing their thing and adding to the quality of life here. Today’s Central Louisiana is vastly different from the one I left years ago. From the Arts Council’s Gallery on the Square to the Fox Theater, from Broken Wheel Brewery to all the great things Paragon continues to bring and do for our community, there’s a lot to be excited about.”

“Van Roy is not only a man of integrity, but one of creativity with a keen attention to detail. He brings a spirit of joy and love to every project and endeavor he’s involved with. It’s been a pleasure to be a friend and business colleague.” – Jody Watley Grammy Award Winning Recording Artist

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