Board game cafe starts up in Virden

They’re calling it “Stay and Play”

In Regina, Vancouver and even Brandon you can find gaming cafés. Now Virden has one.

“We’re pretty stoked about it,” says Manda Kish, one of the owners of Gopher Creek Coffee Company describing their new social gaming space. “We have decided to expand, to put in Stay and Play.”

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Kish and her partner Paul Rhodes started the bistro on Nelson Street just over six years ago, featuring a daily fresh menu, along with a wonderful array of teas, coffees, and tasty sweets baked in-house.

With a penny-gilded floor and local artisan items, the bistro already has atmosphere. Now Kish and Rhodes have upped the ante, invested in a multitude of games, rearranged their seating and are offering extended hours into the evening.

For a small fee per person, customers can come with friends and just play. Kids under 12 are free if accompanied by an adult.

“We’ll do party packs and birthday packs,” says Kish, with food and drink options.

“There’s games to play with kids, games for families, for adults,” says Rhodes.

Kish says, “We’ve had people volunteer to run a game night. A [Settlers of] Catan) night, or some of the old fashioned games like canasta.”

They’ve installed a big screen TV for the virtual reality games with Playstation 4, and a per hour price to accommodate friends taking turns on the same game.

Kish thinks this play space will bring people together, “get you off your phones and your couch, that’s why we called it social gaming. People come, hang out and enjoy this space with us.”

They envision weekend options - a chess tournament with numerous boards going, or a scrabble play-off, winner take the pot… probably just bragging rites.

“We can still seat 30. We still do the same fresh new menu every day. In the evenings we will be running a lot more bar foods. Flatbread pizzas, nachos, stuff you can sit and snack on when you are playing a cool game.”

Stay and Play’s launch is timely as cool dark days of winter descend and the Christmas season is on its way.

© Virden Empire-Advance

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