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First of two bars taking Hailey’s place to open

Profile image for By Jenna Duncan
By Jenna Duncan

West Mulberry Street in Denton is about to have a game changer.

In about two weeks, Jennifer Gibbs and Adam Arnold will launch the first of two concepts taking over the former Hailey’s Club music venue at 122 W. Mulberry St.: Game Changers, an arcade and sports bar.

Old-school and new-school games will be delivered to the venue later this week and early next week, ranging from realistic golfing games for $4 to old-school arcade favorites for a quarter or 50 cents a play.

“I have a very long list of games I want in here for people to play, and they’ll be brought in no particular order,” Arnold said. “Then we can rotate them in and out as we need.”

There will also be sports on as many screens as possible, Arnold said. He hasn’t signed a deal for a cable package yet, but is sure he’ll get the largest sports package available.

“They’re [TVs] going to be everywhere, so people can watch all kinds of stuff from normal things you’d watch like football, but maybe some Thai fighting out of Europe,” he said.

The space is adjoined to the pair’s other project, Dusty’s Bar & Grill, and will have an entry from Dusty’s into Game Changers. The arcade bar reaches from the border with Dusty’s past the stage area in the main part of the building. Past there, where the venue turns into a back bar, the area has been walled off and will be 1933 Spirits and Small Plates.

The project to transform the beloved Hailey’s began in January, after the venue closed Dec. 31. At the time, Gibbs said the venue suffered from financial problems because of the business running a music venue.

“Hailey’s was a great place, but it was really dark and clubby, which it needed to be, but now it’s evolved to a really bright and really inviting place,” Arnold said.

Inside, it feels like decor from the 1980s, he said. Plus there have been more structural improvements: The main bar was rebuilt, and the stage was lowered to be more accommodating. For now, the stage will hold games, darts and a seating area.

Although the exact opening date for the location is not set, as soon as Game Changers is done, work on 1933 will begin. Arnold estimates this second project will take about three months.

The longtime bartender calls this portion of the project his baby. It is an idea he’s had for about 10 years and now has the opportunity to execute.

“It’s really just a bar based off and celebrating the end of Prohibition,” he said. “I’ve got some really cool concepts that Denton is ready for, and I’m really excited about it.”

He estimates the spot will hold about 50 people, and will have a covered patio section.

There will be wine, scotch and champagne menus, craft cocktails and a locally inspired menu built for pairings with alcohol.

JENNA DUNCAN can be reached at 940-566-6889 and via Twitter at @JennaFDuncan.