Emily Lavender will be opening The Fort on Feb. 1 at 60 Queens Road in Duncan. (Warren Goulding/Citizen)

Retro game hangout opening in Duncan

New hangout features 30 board games, seven different video game consoles, ping pong and foosball

Emily Lavender loves playing games.

And her new business venture promises to give Lavender an opportunity to share her passion for board games and video games with the community.

“Growing up in Duncan, my favourite things were playing Super Mario World with friends, boardgame nights with my family, and ’80s dance parties in my parents’ basement,” says Lavender.

The young entrepreneur is in the process of setting up The Fort, at 60 Queens Rd. in Duncan. The business will open on Feb. 1 with 30 board games, seven different video game consoles, ping pong and foosball.

“I wanted to create a space that combines all my favourite things and where people can come together to have fun and connect,” explains Lavender.

The phenomenon of playing board game in a public setting has been sweeping North America, perhaps inspired by a retro desire to go back to simpler and more social times.

Lavender has been hosting ’80s and ’90s nights every other month in Victoria for the past two years just for fun, but decided to make her dream of opening a retro hangout space a reality.

“I wanted to come back to Duncan because it has such a sense of community, including its love and support for small businesses,” she says.

“Also, as someone who grew up here, and sometimes searching for something to do after school, there’s room to open another place to go and have fun.”

Lavender says the space is for anyone that likes to play games and will be a venue for a great date night, family games night, or friend hangout idea. It’s geared for teens and adults.

There will be a $6 entry to use the space, and will include a complementary Polaroid photo, a further connection. Soft drinks and snacks will be available for purchase.

The Fort will be open Wednesdays to Sundays from 2 p.m. until 9 p.m. More information can be found on social media on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/thefortduncan/) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/thefortduncan).

Private bookings will be available outside of open hours for things like birthdays and staff parties.

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