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Axe-Throwing Business Looks To Open In Bloomington

View of the warehouse
Google Maps
The property is located at the northwest corner of East Grove Street and Prairie Street in Bloomington.

Bloomington-Normal has all sorts of recreation options that improve our quality of life.

Soon we may add axe-throwing to the list.

Axe Social LLC owner Dan Kelley wants to open an axe-throwing sports and fitness business at 216 E. Grove St., a two-story brick warehouse just east of downtown Bloomington, according to plans filed with the Bloomington Zoning Board of Appeals. Other leisure activities such as darts may also occur at the venue and could occur if the axe‐throwing venture is unsuccessful, according to the plans.

Axe-throwing is a sport common in Canada and the northern U.S. that is growing in popularity, city staff told the Bloomington Zoning Board of Appeals. According to the National Axe Throwing Federation, there are over 6,000 competitive players in eight countries and 75 cities. It’s relatively new to Bloomington, staff wrote, though a similar facility opened in Peoria in 2018.

Most establishments in the U.S., many of which also serve beer and wine, have reported few to no safety incidents or issues, staff told the board.

The Bloomington Zoning Board of Appeals was set to discuss Axe Social’s petition for a special-use permit at its Wednesday meeting.

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Ryan Denham is the digital content director for WGLT.
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