Ready Player One!
Events DC (the city's convention and sports authority) has partnered with Derek Brown's Drink Company (the masterminds behind DC. pop-up bars such as Miracle on Seventh Street, Cherry Blossom PUB, and the Game of Thrones PUB) to launch the summer's latest pop-up bar, an esports themed activation called “Levels Unlocked: House of DC Heroes."
One of the first bars of its kind in the DMV, the virtual world and the real world meet in an immersive experience that showcase's DC's esports teams, interactive retro games and cocktails that brings all your gamer fantasies alive. Not a gamer (raises hand)? It's a cool way to see what esports is all about with friends and a drink. Also, dragons. Who doesn't want to have a drink alongside a dragon? Plus, like all the other PUBs, it's total Instragram porn.
Open from July 18 through Sept. 29, the pop-up includes three game-themed rooms centered around DC’s esports teams, including Monumental Sports & Entertainment’s NBA2K Team, NRG’s Smash Bros. Ultimate and Overwatch League’s newest team, the Washington Justice. Each game has a dedicated room featuring themed cocktails, live gameplay, and art of the main characters.
The opening reception was last night, so power up (that's a thing gamers say, right?) and check out our sneak peek photos of the esports summer PUB!
What does a gamer's paradise look like?
The Overwatch room features the design team’s favorite characters, Genji and Hanzo. It’s decorated like the Hanamura map known for its quiet village streets, temple grounds, and cherry blossoms.
Walk toward the back of the bar, and beware, there be dragons. Three 15-foot-long dragons made of corrugated plastic and electroluminescent wire hang from the ceiling and curl around the room.
The NBA 2K19 room is decorated with about 700 basketballs hanging from the ceiling “like a basketball cave.” The walls and ceiling are designed to mirror NBA 2K19’s graffiti-scrawled cover art, but with sketches of easily recognizable DC monuments and players from DC esports teams.
There's also a "Mario" room featuring a mural of immediately-recognizable video game characters. And like a real videogame, it has a secret Easter egg but you'll have to figure it out for yourself how to unlock it.
From the sunny scenes of Super Smash Bros. to the cherry blossoms to the hoops and hardwoods of NBA2K19, every inch of the pop-up is full of color, art, and interactive installations.
Events DC plans to host game watches and meet-and-greets with esport players from NB2K’s Wizards District Gaming, NRG’s Smash player Nairo, and the local Overwatch League team, Washington Justice. The bar will have nightly open play for each game and scheduled tournaments throughout the summer as well as performances from popular DJs in the esports community.
Levels Unlocked: House of DC Heroes will be hosted at Pop-Up Bar DC on 1843 7th Street NW on Thursday, July 18 through Sunday, September 29. Hours: Sunday through Thursday 5:00 pm – 12:30 am; Friday and Saturday 5:00 pm – 1:30 am. For more information, visit https://popupbardc.com/.
Look up, down, and all around. Adventures can be found everywhere -- if you're curious enough to look. k for it