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Friday, June 14, 2019

Up-Down STL, Opening Today, Brings Arcade Bar to the Central West End

Posted By on Fri, Jun 14, 2019 at 11:20 AM

click to enlarge Up-Down STL is hoping the Central West End will indeed decide "this must be the place." - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • Up-Down STL is hoping the Central West End will indeed decide "this must be the place."

Up-Down STL
(405 North Euclid Avenue, 314-449-1742), the arcade bar opening this evening in the Central West End, says it has something for everyone.

"Groups can come here and all like the place,” general manager Joey Akers says. “It's unique in that way."



The Iowa-based chain plans to open its St. Louis doors today from 5 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., with the first 100 customers receiving free tokens. And if you come to play, there are plenty of games spanning the 7,500 square feet of the two-story location.

Up-Down features more than 60 vintage arcade games and pinball machines, as well as skee ball and more modern games like Mario Kart and Dance Dance Revolution. If you want to catch a break from the flashing lights and noise inside, Akers says, you can go to the outdoor patio for yard games including shuffleboard and giant Connect Four.

click to enlarge The newly created patio offers games including giant Connect 4. - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • The newly created patio offers games including giant Connect 4.

Up-Down upgraded the plumbing, electric and HVAC in the space where Herbie’s Vintage 72 and Balaban’s formerly resided. It also added the modern-looking walled-in patio.

Both levels and the outdoor patio contain bars which will serve more than 60 craft beers (including some local brews) and cocktails. If you’re hungry, you can grab a slice or a whole pizza, with six different New York-style pies on the menu. Up-Down later plans to add salads and sandwiches to its menu, according to Akers.

click to enlarge Pizza is available by the slice or as a whole pie. - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • Pizza is available by the slice or as a whole pie.


Even though Up-Down is an Iowa-based chain, Akers says it’s important for the arcade bar to fit into the culture of St. Louis.

“It's not a corporate stamp,” Akers says.

St. Louis athletic legends like Jackie Joyner Kersee and Lou Brock are featured on the walls. And the bubble hockey game shows the Blues facing off at home against the Blackhawks.

Akers formerly managed the Kansas City location and tonight he expects a line going out the door. But not everyone has been supportive of the arcade bar; a pair of neighbors challenged its liquor license, taking their fight all the way to circuit court. The neighbors lost their case, but have filed an appeal, which is still pending.

"Yeah, we had some difficulties,” Akers says. “But people were overwhelmingly supportive."

click to enlarge The Blues are featured in the bubble hockey game. - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • The Blues are featured in the bubble hockey game.

Akers says it’s been a long process, but he expects a good turnout tonight.

“The games are good. The beer is great,” Akers says. “I think people are really going to be impressed and just blown away by the building and everything we've done here."

Up-Down STL’s regular hours run from 3 p.m. to 2 a.m. during the week and noon to 2 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. You can find more information on its website.

[image-11]
click to enlarge Try your hand at Skee-Ball. - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • Try your hand at Skee-Ball.

click to enlarge More than 60 craft beers are available. - KATIE COUNTS
  • KATIE COUNTS
  • More than 60 craft beers are available.

click to enlarge img_1551.jpg

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