Geek and nerd culture is the last thing on most people’s minds when relating it to the the bar scene. For the most stereotypical perspectives of combining the two, they are usually found as stories in comic books or graphic novels. However, that ridiculous branding has been done away with as Aaron Haaland, the owner of A Comic Book Shop, and Troy Doerner, the owner of Cosplay Deviants, team up to bring The Geek Easy, the initiation of comic prestige with the friendly bar experience!
According to the Orlando Sentinel, the Geek Easy, located in Winter Park, Florida, is the answer to where geeks can hang out, talk about Doctor Who and Game of Thrones while reminiscing on old school Nintendo games. Along with the hang-out, food and beverages are offered, and some of them even cater to the core crowd, with classics like butter beer (Harry Potter Series) and dwarven ale (Medieval RPG Games). The Geek Easy also has special events such as karaoke and burlesque shows. All in all, it combines all the best parts of sports bars, full-serve restaurants, and fast casual restaurants, and spliced it with everything nerds and geeks love. Think of Cheers but with Power Rangers, superheroes, Pokemon, Mario, and every other character from comic book, anime, and video game franchises getting along.
Haaland and Doerner were also business-savvy enough to make The Geek Easy both unique and optimal. First, it is unique, not just because it is located in the back of A Comic Book Shop – which it borrows its theme from the prohibition era which utilized speakeasies – but its very presentation is unique. The Geek Easy isn’t just some regular bar/restaurant that geeks and nerds camaraderie in. It actually cosplays the part of a hideout or secret lair reminiscent in the stories their customer base have come to admire, complete with HD flat panel televisions, superhero and Super Mario Bros. designs on the walls, and the coup de grâce, question mark box (again from Super Mario Bros.) lights.
Second, The Geek Easy is optimal to its customer base and location. This is more of a lucky draw that Aaron Haaland’s first business, A Comic Book Shop, so happens to be in one of the best places for The Geek Easy: right across the street from Full Sail University. For those who are unfamiliar on what the university specializes in, they fashion students in digital media, graphic design, animation, computer programming, and any other profession that centers on movies, animation, or game development… which are all professions geeks are stereotypically in pursuit of. Being accessible is a major plus for the business and the fact that the prices on food, which includes basic American bar cuisine to Cuban food, and beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, are amazingly affordable, which is a plus since most college kids are at time… well… broke.
The Geek Easy seems like a minute slice of paradise for geeks and nerds, and the business model Haaland and Doerner have designed has proven to be successful. As a matter of fact, The Geek Easy is expanding. According to an interview with IGN, The Geek Easy has started an Indiegogo campaign for renovations and expansion. At this moment of this article’s publication, 31 backers have raised almost $10,000, a third of the way to their goal of $30,000. Also, the campaign is similar to Kickstarter, which has funded some of the most wanted projects among fans, which include Mighty No. 9 and even a sequel to Shaq Fu, both reported here on The Inquisitr.
Is this the beginning of a possible statewide, or even nationwide expansion? That cannot be answered. I am sure that both Aaron Haaland and Troy Doerner are just taking it one step at a time. Maybe one day, there might be a Geek Easy in the back of your local comic book store.
The Geek Easy is located in the Orlando, Florida area at 114 South Semoran Blvd., Winter Park. Just like it was stated earlier in the article, The Geek Easy is just like a speakeasy, and is located in the back of A Comic Book Shop.
[Images via Bing]