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Geek Bar Coming Soon to Lincoln Park, Reveals Sneak Peek

By Paul Biasco | April 9, 2014 4:13pm | Updated on April 9, 2014 5:32pm

LINCOLN PARK — The soon-to-be center of all things geek revealed a first look at the two-story Geek Bar project Wednesday.

The bar for geeks is set to open at 1960 N. Clybourn Ave. in a space formerly held by two Mexican restaurants.

The project was made possible by a Kickstarter campaign that raised nearly $45,000 from 658 backers.

David Zoltan, the man behind Geek Bar, hopes to create a place for geeks to celebrate their love for geek culture in all its forms ranging from science fiction to fantasy and technology.

Zoltan said it was hard for geeks to find anything close to what he had planned for the space, even on an international basis.

"Chicago is the perfect place to do it given how broad the geek audience is here," he said.

The goal is to open the bar/restaurant in June.

The renderings released Wednesday are of the upstairs space, which Zoltan said was going for a "Mad Max"-based look inspired by wire frames.

"We want it to feel like it had a very modern sci-fi sort of feel to it," he said.

The bottom level will have a slightly more comfortable feel to it with a library to borrow books from as well as video game consoles.

Zoltan originally hoped to open Geek Bar in Lakeview, but eventually decided on the Lincoln Park location after months of searching.

The two-story, 10,000-square-foot space was formerly home to Caliente and Lalo's Chicago.

The demolition work is complete, but Geek Bar is waiting on permits to start construction inside.

Zoltan said Chicago was the perfect spot for the Geek Bar because of the booming tech startup industry, the bio-tech industry and high-tech engineering such as Boeing.

"You start to accumulate a lot of people who are in the various STEM fields," he said.

That doesn't mean you have to be in one of those fields to be welcome at the bar.

"If you call yourself a geek, you're a geek," Zoltan said. "There's really not a gateway. There's no threshold of geekdom."

Ahead of the anticipated June opening, Geek Bar is holding a collaboration with DryHop Brewers to showcase their first beer "I Can Kill You With My Brain."

The event will be held April 15 at DryHop, 3155 N. Broadway.

The name of the beer is a reference to the sci-fi television show "Firefly."

Tickets to the private event are $20, which gets you in the door and two drinks.