People are interacting with each other, playing games, eating food.
It's not like going to a regular bar.
The little community that we've developed and the regulars, it's kind of like Cheers.
We know a whole bunch of people by name.
They know us.
The excitement that people get to play a game or when there's a group of people here and they're playing a party game and they're laughing and squealing and screaming, it's just great.
I am Kerry Winger.
I'm the owner of The Boardroom.
How about... well do Yinsh.
Which is an abstract strategy.
And it's a favorite of ours.
Tell us about the boardroom and how you how it got started.
So we have about 700 games to play.
It got started after I read a book talking about the history of board games.
And in it they were talking about board game cafes as a place for people to meet and hang out and do activities.
And to me, that just sounded perfect because people are on their phone too much.
We don't have Wi-Fi.
We have signs that say no Wi-Fi, play board games, talk to each other.
And it's a great way to get involved in a community of people that have been doing this forever.
I'm here every night.
I've just been a gamer all my life.
It used to be games were generally pretty simple, and they were things that you could pull out of your closet on a Saturday or Sunday, evening with your family.
And there weren't a lot of rules you had to teach people.
You know, I'm thinking things like Life, Monopoly.
You know, all those old classic games.
And then around probably the early seventies or so, things started to branch out a little bit and you started to see more complex gaming where mechanics became very important, and now you can classify games that way a lot.
It's a deck builder or it's a resource management, or it's a worker placement.
You know, there's all these terms for various mechanics.
As I look around and I see these, you know, 700 plus games, it can be overwhelming for somebody who is like looking for community but maybe doesn't know where to start.
What are the questions that you would like people to have answered when they come in?
If people need help finding a game, we tend to ask, What kind of games have you played?
Have you played any modern games?
What kind of games do you like to like card games or dice games or games with boards?
And we do teach mes.
That gives people an opportunity to learn.
We've actually said that to customers.
We understand it's a lot.
We have these little stickers in the left hand corner that tell people how hard or difficult the game is, but they all have smiley faces on there.
All smiley faces, greens very easy and then yellow is easy, which is like Clue.
When you start getting into the light orange and the dark orange, there's more mechanics.
It's going to take longer and there's a lot more to it.
And when you get to pink, I think we only have three pink.
This is the one that takes 8 to 10 hours.
If everybody knows what they're doing, I want to remind you, though, it's not 8 to 10 hours of Monopoly going round and round and round.
This game is evolving with you.
Things are happening.
Things are changing.
You're not repeatedly going to be doing the same thing at all.
How have you seen how people respond to board games and people who play board games?
Have you seen the stigma around that change over the years?
It's becoming way more mainstream.
There's just so much.
There's something for everyone.
I think the pandemic definitely pushed board games to the forefront.
I think when that happened, people were looking for stuff to do and that's when they started getting into board games.
The more games you play, the more games you can learn.
Because as soon as you learn certain mechanics that'll transfer over the other games.
We moved here during the beginning of the pandemic and so it just felt very isolated.
We tried to do like FaceTime and try to play games like online, but it really isn't the same when you're sitting in a room full of people and making fun of each other.
It's a great way to meet people.
I mean, people have made amazing, lasting friendships in here just by gaming.
I can't even imagine life now without it.
I hope it keeps flying because.
Yeah, I basically live here.
Hey, good game.
Doesn't matter who wins or lose.
You know that's so true, though.
I mean, that was fun.
I mean, I hate losing, but now I will lose graciously.
Sometimes it doesn't matter to me.
I enjoy just the act of doing it and talking and hanging out, having fun and making your head hurt.
This is my happy place.