03/03/2015 11:46 EST | Updated 05/03/2015 05:59 EDT

Dream Cafe eyes co-op model in Penticton

A group of people in Penticton have a dream for The Dream Cafe — to turn the local music venue into a co-operative.

The cafe's owner Pierre Couture has Parkinson's disease and wants to take a step back from running the business.

"The Dream Cafe has its own community and there's a lot of people who regularly go to it to attend the shows there and feel like they have an ownership in it anyways because it's kind of their community living room," Murray Swales — who is among those forming the co-op — told Daybreak South's Chris Walker.

Swales said once the co-op is incorporated, it will buy the business from Couture and his wife. A board will oversee the operations, and Swales said Couture will stay on as general manager for as long as his health allows him to.

Couture will also be tasked with finding his replacement — someone who will continue managing the daily operations when he is no longer able to.

"The Dream Cafe to a great extent is Pierre," said Swales.

Swales said the group needs to raise a minimum of $350,000 to form the co-op and buy the business, but has an ultimate goal of raising a little bit more — $400,000. 

Swales said a third of that more ambitious goal has already been raised, and said he's hopeful the rest of the money will be raised before the end of April.

To hear the full interview with Murray Swales, click the audio labelled: The Dream Cafe dreams of becoming a co-operative.