The STIX Arcade Bar resumes its activities

STIX Arcade Bar (since February 2020), downtown Champaign’s retro video game bar, is reopening after a 2-month hiatus since filming on December 12, 2021.

Owners Justin Taylor, founder of JT Walker’s Restaurant & Brewery and Project 47 in Mahomet, and Wayne Lam, founder of Vietnamese 83 in Champaign, are the masterminds behind creating what is STIX and are ready to relaunch their pinball machines.

Late last year, Downtown Champaign experienced an increase in crime and violence. Unfortunately, STIX was affected by this after a nearby shooting on Dec. 12 left supporters of the facility to wait indefinitely for city approval to allow STIX to reopen. Taylor and Lam have contacted and met with the city countless times only to be faced with extensions of the shutdown and a lack of communication, despite promising to be able to reopen in the new year. However, Taylor and Lam held their heads high thanks to their staff and supporters.

“2022 is going to be our year!” says Lam. Taylor and Lam opened STIX a month before the start of the COVID 2020 pandemic, so 2020 and 2021 are known to have been the most complex years for STIX as a company. STIX’s operating experience is nothing like their other respective companies.

Taylor explains, “We as STIX plan to get involved with the community now that local events are resuming. Street fairs, festivals, parades, you will see us there proudly. We’re excited to put STIX back on the map. Taylor is excited about STIX’s involvement with the local food, drink and entertainment communities and hopes to share his and Lam’s passion for combining gaming and recreation.

STIX welcomes both Parkland and U of I students. Whether you’re new to the game or a veteran, STIX wants you to establish and tune your gameplay here. You can enjoy both retro and modern gaming with gaming-inspired drinks: popular signature cocktails include: Princess Peach, Sonic, Donkey Kong, Miss Pac Man, TMNT and more!

For 2022, the STIX staff are teaming up to create events for the local college student who plays for fun or the competitive college esports athlete: from Super Smash Bros tournaments to Mario Party…parties. In addition to gaming events, STIX combines pop culture and music. You will see Johnny Bravo for Rock and Roll evenings, Speedy Gonzalez for Latin evenings, or Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi for J-Pop evenings. The staff members are passionate about their game and their pop culture and will host a handful of events you won’t want to miss!

STIX Arcade Bar is a 21+ establishment. However, check STIX’s Facebook and Instagram for future upcoming events suitable for all ages!


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