2018 is the year of ax-throwing bars. As reported yesterday, a growing Philadelphia-based chain called Urban Axes is slated for a summer opening in the heart of Union Square, Somerville (2 Union Sq.) Customers will be able to purchase beer and wine while throwing hatchets at targets.
There’s also Agawam Axe House, opening as early as this month out in Agawam, where customers can bring in their own food and beverages as well as purchase pre-packaged snacks onsite. And there’s Half Axe, opening February inside the Apex Entertainment building in Marlborough. Half Axe won’t be serving food or drink, but there’s a bar right downstairs, as well as bowling, laser tag, go karts, and more.
A little closer to Boston, right by popular boozy spots Night Shift Brewing, Bone Up Brewing, and Short Path Distillery, Revolution Axe Throwing is heading towards an April 2018 opening at 69 Norman St., Everett.
“We’re a small team of young professionals but don’t take ourselves too seriously and love adventure sports,” said Revolution co-founder Chris Greeno, one of four people behind Revolution. (Greg DiLullo is the CEO, and Greeno is an owner/co-founder along with Tom Vieth and Dan Doran.)
“We’d heard about ax-throwing for the first time a couple years ago and tried it out during separate trips to Toronto and Montreal. Needless to say, we all were hooked — and baffled that there wasn’t a location in Boston to keep our hobby going. We learned why after spending the next year looking for spaces to rent but eventually found our current location in Everett and are pumped to get the ax-throwing scene started here locally.”
Greeno said that the Revolution space is part of a former warehouse, located right next to Sky Zone and MetroRock, a trampoline park and rock-climbing gym, respectively. Revolution’s buildout is still in progress, but it’ll have high ceilings and an industrial atmosphere once it’s complete.
Revolution doesn’t plan to serve food to start, but the team is currently applying for a beer and wine permit, working with the City of Everett to get it through. It’s the inclusion of alcohol that raises a lot of questions for people unfamiliar with ax-throwing, but Greeno said: “After people have been, they realize the environment is incredibly safe. BYOB and full on-sale liquor ax-throwing venues have been running in Canada for nearly a decade now with zero serious incidents. Once people look into it and realize we have a one-to-one throwing coach-to-group ratio, the concerns are alleviated. Our landlord, Gerry Berberian, has also been very helpful in working with the City of Everett.”
Greeno also noted that Revolution’s proximity to two breweries and a distillery could certainly come into play in terms of potential collaborations. “That area has turned into such a hotspot with its own growing community of breweries and activities, and we’re really excited to become a part of that,” he said. “Jared and Liz [Kiraly] of Bone Up have been really helpful as we thought about the Everett location, so some collaboration will be in the works for the future.”
“We’re particularly excited about bringing ax-throwing to Boston and generating a community around the sport like in Toronto or Montreal,” Greeno said. “We’ve seen a renewed interest in activity-based hangout options in Boston (like pool, shuffleboard, board games, ping pong, etc.), and we’re all about it. We see ax-throwing as the (not-so-)logical next step; it’s a blast, and it’s surprisingly accessible. Everyone’s first reaction when we tell them about our project is that it sounds dangerous, but safety is a top priority for us. Ax-throwing is an amazingly fun activity, and it can also be a safe one too.”
Update, March 15, 2018: This piece has been updated to include an address for the forthcoming Urban Axes in Somerville.