If you open your summer bar on a sunny summer day with summer vacation just around the corner, you don’t need a whole lot to make a good first impression. But even without the luck of the weather gods, the summer bar of the Zomer van Antwerpen at the new location in Deurne would apparently catch on.
On the first day, the bar moved a lot of visitors from the Scheldt bend to lesser-known Park Groot Schijn in Deurne. “More visitors than expected”, says bar manager Onur Ciftcibasi (28). He worked for four years in the Antwerp summer bar and is now moving to Deurne.
“I was skeptical about the move at first because I didn’t know it very well here, but it’s even more charming here than the other location because it’s a bit smaller. We have gone from three caterers in one of the peak years to one caterer and our bar in the container is also a lot smaller here. We have everything we need here. In front of the site is an ideal concrete surface where the circus tents will be for the performances that start.”
If there is something that immediately catches the eye of most movements, it is probably that scaling down. The terrain on the Scheldt bend was considerably more extensive than that of Deurne. “There we were able to receive about a thousand people in non-corona times, here there are about four hundred,” said those responsible.
But that doesn’t keep Sofie Theunis (31) and Aline Bogaerts (31) awake. “It’s not normally scary here,” she says. Aline is on maternity leave and plans to visit the summer bar very often this summer with the kids. “We live on the other side of the Rivierenhof, so we can come here by bike. It’s great that it actually opens around here.”
Sofie and Aline are here with their children Maline (7), Milou (3) and Miles (three months) and Lynet (7). They especially have an eye for the playground, which became the bar next to the shade of the trees. “Here is a swing and you can swing on it with six people at a time,” says Lynet enthusiastically.
“And the prices, we have to say that, they are not too bad here. Also not unimportant”, Sofie would like to have said when she comes back from the bar.
And so on the first day it is mainly local residents who are enthusiastic about the new addition to the neighbourhood. a lot for Lotte (39), Benjamin (39) and their children Stella (6) and Klaas (9). They come from the area of the Te Boelaar Park.
“We have lived here for eight years and we only see more shops and cafes being added. It just gets more fun around here. We also went to the summer bar on the Scheldebocht, but that was more of a barrier to cycle all the way there. It was a very charming place there on the Scheldt, here you miss the link with the city a little bit. The first location of the summer bar, near where Dancing Petrol used to be, was perhaps the most beautiful. But we are certainly not complaining that a nice bar has now been added in Deurne.”
The summer bar is not open all summer. The first performance will run at the bar on Wednesday, the Belgian-Guinean collective Amoukanama will play the new creation Fa† After that, the summer bar is also the place for free circus performances.