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'I just want to see a renaissance downtown': New bar set to open Downtown Indianapolis

Park & Rec is set to open on Friday March 17th at 11 a.m.
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Posted at 8:50 PM, Mar 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-16 20:57:39-04

INDIANAPOLIS — A new bar is set to open downtown Indianapolis and it’s just in time for St. Patrick’s Day weekend.

“I just want to see a renaissance downtown. Something where people can come and they feel safe,” Owner Todd Johnson told WRTV.

On Thursday, WRTV got an exclusive look at Park & Rec. The bar will move into the second floor of the Taps and Dolls location that was shut down in August of last year.

Park & Rec Bar

In March 2022, Taps and Dolls was denied a renewal of its liquor license after numerous incidents at the location concerning safety. Park & Rec has arcade games, drinks, and state of the art security.

Park & Rec Bar

“At this facility you are going to have a separate walk-in area with a Garrett 6500 metal detector,” Johnson says.

He adds that the metal detector is something similar to what is seen at Gainbridge Fieldhouse or an airport.

“Once you pass that, you will walk up to a person who will put your ID in an ID changer, the same ones used at TSA. That lets us know if that person has done something silly or is wanted for anything,” Johnson said.

According to Johnson, the bar is named after his 8-year-old son Parker. Park & Rec is set to open on Friday March 17th at 11 a.m.

Park & Rec Bar

Johnson won't just be opening Park & Rec. He will be utilizing the first floor as a family friendly sports bar, which will become Walk-On's Sports Bistreaux.

In October of 2022, Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux signed an area development agreement to bring the award-winning brand to downtown Indianapolis, located at 247 S. Meridian Street in the historic wholesale district, as well as other areas in Indiana.

Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux is expected to open May 15th.

Johnson, chief executive officer of Trident Hospitality, is partnering with legendary Tampa Bay linebacker Derrick Brooks, and financial partner Wade Kornblith to open the first Walk-On’s in Indianapolis.

Johnson has served as an owner, operator and landlord for multiple restaurant and hospitality properties in Indiana and Florida since 1991.