A space for community, fun and food is the vision for an empty lot downtown South Porcupine.
There has been a lot of talk about the property at 84 Bruce Ave. in the past year.
It's the site of the once-popular bar The Central Tavern, which was known locally as The Zoo. Last year, The Salvage Kings crew demolished the building. Those episodes kicked off the second season of the History Channel show.
In April, the City of Timmins sold the property to Julie Evans for $17,250.
Evans co-owns Escape from Reality with Marcus Niebler.
This week, a Kickstarter campaign launched to help turn their Quick Lunch vision for the downtown South Porcupine space into reality.
Quick Lunch is an outdoor eatery that will serve sausages, soup and more.
Evans said the vision is for community and community fun.
“We are going to be putting in a sausage cart, putting in a pavilion, we’re putting up games so that people can play them for free — chess and Connect Four. We’re building a full-size Catan board, meaning an outside size one where the tiles are a foot-and-a-half across, because we can,” she explained.
People would have access to the gazebo space all week long. The games would be free for people to play when the sausage cart is open.
In the future, she said they want to put in mini-golf and potentially a garden centre for rare plants.
“We want to make it to be a hub again back here in the downtown of SoPo we want a hub of community,” she said.
The Kickstarter campaign options range from $10 to $150. The levels go basic support for the initiative, to different options of sponsoring pieces of the giant games built or pre-purchasing food and drink combos.
“If people pre-buy and we don’t hit our funding goal, then nothing comes out of their accounts. Nothing happens. If they do commit, once we hit our goal and the deadline comes that’s when their cards get charged,” Evans said.
The goal is to open the space this August.
A sausage cart has been one of Neibler's goals since his days at the University of Toronto.
"I’ve always wanted to run a sausage cart. He talked to everybody, it was awesome and that’s what started this,” he said.
While community is top-of-mind for the duo, when they opened Escape from Reality, which is around the corner from this space at the corner of Golden Avenue and Main Street in the former CIBC building, the Quick Lunch space was not in the plans.
When the lot went up for sale, Niebler said they saw the opportunity to create a space for people to take advantage of the good weather.
Recently, the pair also purchased a five-acre lot from the City of Timmins to create a unique attraction called The Realm.
The Realm will be a blend of live action role playing (LARPing) and the escape room business. People will complete quests, with tasks unlocking different areas of the property.
You can find out more or support the Quick Lunch Kickstarter campaign here.