Other neighborhoods have their “street fairs” or their “pub crawls” or “pillow fights” on regular intervals (Lower Haight has one tonight even!), but over here on Divis we have these once-a-trimester Art Walks (here Matt Baume’s coverage of the one from June)in which everyone in the neighborhood calls all their friends to come hang out in our tiny neighborhood bars. Seriously, it’s like the county fair for District 5. Everyone puts their prized pumpkins on display, so to speak. Even the Perish Trust – that delightful store that sells typewriters and salvaged wooden mermaids stayed open late and was probably serving drinks (Sorry, Perish Trust, I didn’t get to stop in, but please keep holding on to that really rad typewriter I want for Christmas.)
I could see some regulars begrudging the fact that the wait at pretty much every bar in the neighborhood is a little longer than the instant service we’re used to, but this actually worked in my favor when the bartendress at Bar 821 comped one of my PBR’s as thanks for “being normal”. No problem, I can be normal for free beer anytime.
And although I’m not particularly ambitious when it comes to these sorts of things, I managed to make it through six bars, one art gallery, two tacos, and more sangria than I’m comfortable admitting. What struck me the most about Thursday’s Art Walk, however, wasn’t the fancy holiday lights in the trees. It was the number of pop-up businesses setting up on the sidewalk to take advantage of the increased foot traffic. I didn’t see “guy with rack of clothes at McAllister and Divis” on the official map, but I applaud your hustle, sir.
In his free time, Andrew documents neighborhood goings-on at AggressivePanhandler.com and probably supports the local watering holes a little too much.