Axe-throwing studios snap up retail sites

As the popularity of axe-throwing continues to grow, so does the number of local venues dedicated to the activity.

Canada-based Bad Axe Throwing, which opened the first local axe-throwing studio in June 2017 at 235 S. Meridian St. in downtown Indianapolis, is working to open a north-side location early next year. And Johnson County just got its first axe-throwing studio last month, with another planned to open by the end of the year.

“The sport of axe-throwing itself is blowing up right now,” said Chris Engel, owner of Johnson County Axe Throwing at 6001 N. U.S. 31 in Whiteland. Engel’s studio, located in the South Greenwood Shoppes plaza just north of Crossroads Drive, opened on Labor Day weekend.

Engel said he was inspired to open his facility after visiting Bad Axe’s downtown Indianapolis facility and wanted to bring a different type of entertainment option to the south side.

The facility offers league axe throwing in an alcohol-free environment, and customers can bring their own axes, knives or ninja stars to throw, Engel said. Business has been brisk so far, he said, with customers hailing from Johnson, Marion and Shelby counties.

Meanwhile, the father/son team of Mark and Ethan Brothers are taking a different approach with their axe-throwing venue, Outer Edge. The two are aiming to open their facility by the end of the year at 378 Western Blvd., on the southeast corner of the intersection of Indiana 37 and Fairview Road.

Outer Edge has secured a two-way liquor permit and will offer a variety of local craft beer along with wine.

As compared with some other axe-throwing venues, “this is going to be more of a lounge look, a bar look,” Mark Brothers said.

Outer Edge will operate in a 2,400-square-foot space formerly occupied by Tuchman Cleaners.

Bad Axe’s new studio will be in a 5,700-square-foot space at 7857 Michigan Road. It will be the second local studio for Bad Axe, which was founded in Canada in 2014 and now has more than 40 locations in the U.S. and Canada.

Other local axe-throwing studios include Ragnarok Axe Throwing, which opened in August 2018 at 8445 Castleton Corner Drive; and Anarchy Axe Throwing, which opened in September 2018 at 9546 Allisonville Road.

In other news this week:

Dottie Couture, a locally owned women’s boutique, plans to consolidate its Fishers and Keystone locations into a new store at 8661 River Crossing Blvd. Owner Brooke Magdzinski said she’s targeting a winter opening for the new location. In the meantime, the Fishers store, at 8594 E. 116th St., and the Keystone location, at 8555 River Road, will remain open until the new store is ready. Dottie Couture also has a location in Greenwood at 789 U.S. 31 North, just south of Greenwood Park Mall.

MBP Distinctive Catering has moved to 950 S. White River Parkway West Drive, in the Biltwell Event Center.

The catering company’s original owner, Mary Beth Poe, sold the business to Taki Sawi last year. Sawi owns the Biltwell along with Hoaglin Catering, and he and wife Jeanette also owned long-time Fountain Square restaurant Santorini Greek Kitchen, which closed last year.

Finally, a couple of openings to note at area malls operated by Simon Property Group.

Cupid Couture, which sells bridal, prom and special event attire, is set to open late next month at Circle Centre mall. The business was founded in downtown Valparaiso in 2007. Founder/owner Lucy Jaime is relocating the store to Indianapolis.

— And Book Warehouse is now open in a 2,600-square-foot space at Indiana Premium Outlets in Edinburgh. The mall was formerly known as Edinburgh Premium Outlets but changed its name earlier this month. It’s the second Indiana location for Book Warehouse, which also has a store in Michigan City.

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