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Bowery Poetry Club to Close for Renovations Before Restaurant Reboot

The Bowery Poetry Club is located on the Bowery near the corner of Bleecker Street.
The Bowery Poetry Club is located on the Bowery near the corner of Bleecker Street.
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DNAinfo/Patrick Hedlund

EAST VILLAGE — The Bowery Poetry Club will temporarily shut its doors in two weeks to renovate its space in advance of a relaunch that will put a stronger emphasis on food, its owner explained.

The club, a haven for the arts since 2002, will shuts its doors on July 17 and eventually reopen with new restaurant operations, according to owner Bob Holman.

Fears about the fate of the much-loved institution have been swirling in recent months, after EV Grieve reported on the bar’s empty event calendar for August and a defunct fundraising campaign in May.

"There will be a better mix of food and art," said Holman, who declined to go into further detail about the new-look Bowery Poetry Club.

"It is going to be much more comfortable with a restaurant," he noted, adding that there were several options of the space might look after the month or so renovation work.

The club, located at 308 Bowery near Bleecker Street, often hosts numerous performances per night that include live music and poetry readings.

While events are still scheduled on the club's calendar for after the July 17 closure date, Holman said those would be taken down to clear up confusion.

The club has experimented with different food options in the past, including the Lower Eastside Girls Club's Celebration Cafe, Bowery Beef and and a coffee shop at the address.

But the new eatery will take dining to a whole new level, Holman explained, without elaborating further on the plan.

"We are still working on that," he said, noting that he has yet to work out details like the chef overseeing the menu or when exactly the revamped space will reopen.

"I'm sorry for being so mysterious," Holman added. 

In May the club registered a campaign with crowding funding website Kickstarter hoping to raise $50,000 to recreate the space as a restaurant. However, this was scratched three days later, according to EV Grieve.