Bad Axe Throwing’s Reopening a ‘Complete Failure’ Says CEO, With Only Two Customers All Weekend

'This points to a bigger problem the entertainment industry is going to have.'
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Bad Axe Throwing reopened Friday after getting the green light from Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp to do so, nearly a month since being forced to close by state mandate to slow the spread of COVID-19.

But the Westside entertainment facility, at 1257 Marietta Blvd NW, didn’t reopen to a line of Atlantans with bells on, eager to chuck axes for “quarantine and stress relief” as President and CEO Mario Zelaya had hoped.

“We did a lot of marketing,” Zelaya said.

“We spent a lot of money letting people know we’re open. It had ZERO impact. The reopening weekend was a disaster. We had [two] customers all weekend. This points to a bigger problem the entertainment industry is going to have.”

Here are some of the safety guidelines being taken by Bad Axe:

  • Wipe down of all axes with Clorox wipes after each event
  • Clean tables & surfaces of group after each event
  • Limited Capacity: reduction in occupant load to ensure we only use EVERY OTHER target in the facility so we adhere to a 6ft distance guidelines
  • Coaches will maintain distance and not make any contact with customers:
    • Credit card processing will be done at a distance where customers can drop off credit card on table, step back, coaches step forward, swipe, leave POS on table for signature by customer (if signature is required)
  • Staff with any symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) cannot enter the facility for at least 72 hours

“We prepared for the worse, but this weekend of only [two] customers was something we never imagined,” Zelaya said.

“Bars, bowling alleys, movie theatres, axe throwing, and any other entertainment concepts are going to have the most difficult time reaching normalcy after the closures. This past weekend showed us that. It’s very worrisome for our Atlanta location.”

Owners of other entertainment facilities, like The Painted Pin, felt Friday was too early to open, calling a rush to do so a “nail in the coffin for many companies.”

“We are scared to death about the new norms, strict limitations, and guidelines that will make it impossible to be financially viable,” Owner Justin Amick said in a prepared statement to What Now Atlanta on the decision last week.

“A rushed reopening could be the nail in the coffin for many companies. We won’t risk the safety of our staff, families, and patrons, as their well being is of the utmost importance. We look forward to digesting all the information and making the best decision that aligns and serves our entire community.”

[Editor’s note: The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is rapidly evolving as is its effect on Atlanta, and the City’s businesses and its residents. Click here for What Now Atlanta’s ongoing coverage of the crisis. For guidance and updates on the pandemic, please visit the C.D.C. website.]

Caleb J. Spivak

Caleb J. Spivak (CJS) is the Founder of What Now Media Group, Inc., the publisher of What Now Atlanta, What Now Los Angeles, What Now San Diego, and What Now Las Vegas.
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8 months ago

People ain’t rushing out like the idiots in government want them to do. Numbers still going up up up and dumb asses act like all is well

8 months ago
Reply to  Metoo

Metoo, my wife and I couldn’t agree with you more. The head of the d.a. club didn’t even follow the pre-requisites that the experts in DC listed. #1 was 14 consecutive days of leveling off or declining cases. The state, as a whole, looks like a bunch of illiterate, gun-totin’, rednecks. But we’ll show the world. We’re not falling for the dangerous comments made by our esteemed “leaders.” We’re not dumb. We’re not idiots. We care about other people just as we care about ourselves. We have good common sense and we know whose advice to heed and we’ll give… Read more »

8 months ago

People – get out there! Daily cases, hospitalizations and deaths are falling. Georgia cases on 4/14 were 866, on 4/29 current stats show 30 cases. I am required to wear a mask today, when 2-6 weeks ago, when cases were climbing I was not. This makes no sense. Please visit the Georgia Public Health website and empower yourself.

8 months ago
Reply to  KDLady

How do you dislike a comment?

8 months ago

Hey KDLady
The numbers are going UP each day. Are you stupid. It’s over 25,000 as of this morning.

8 months ago

Numbers are actually going down.. the 25,000 is cumulative cases

8 months ago
Reply to  sam

Nope, not going down. Just the GA DPH playing with the numbers and the way they report

8 months ago
Reply to  sam


8 months ago

And you also have the DPH with head honcho Kathleen Kloomey and the constantly changing data & numbers given to the public; nobody can keep track of the sh!t–regional-govt–politics/new-changes-state-virus-data-confuse-experts-residents-alike/T6EbPkqGJt1RhK3qtYp6hL/

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