Barcade coming to city this spring

KAYLA BREEN/STAFF PHOTO1UP Arcade & Pub co-owner Chris James (left) stands in his incoming business’s space at 22 Brinkerhoff St. with property owner Peter Regnier. James said the arcade games will be ready for game play at the “barcade” sometime this spring. Also available at the space will be beer, wine and pub-style food.

PLATTSBURGH — Attention all gamers: 22 Brinkerhoff St. is leveling up for a new tenant.

The 1,500-square-foot space — past home to The Bagel Pit and then Sip — is being renovated for a mixed-use bar, restaurant and arcade.

Part-owner Chris James, 42, said the “arcade bar” concept of 1UP Arcade & Pub is a popular trend.

“It’s new to Plattsburgh, but it’s not a new idea,” he said. “They’re popping up all over the country.”

The venue is dusty now, but when doors are ready to open in mid April or May, it will have a 1980s/1990s retro-video-game vibe, he said.

“What was old and outdated is now interesting and fun again.”


James and his wife, Jill, 43, are joined in the venture by friends, brothers Brandon Chamberlain, 35, and Kevin Chamberlain, 43.

Each partner has a full-time career, but Chris said they have been collecting and refurbishing dated arcade cabinets from Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace for nearly a decade.

With some 35 cabinets in their inventory, 1UP will rotate the games in and out of the space, featuring about 10 at a time.

“The idea is to make sure it’s not stagnant,” Chris said.

Those cabs include games like Space Invaders, Terminator 2: Judgement Day, NBA Jam and NFL Blitz.


NFL Blitz could be featured at the arcade bar closer to football season, Chris said.

“Maybe we’ll host a fantasy football draft with the cab in here,” he said.

“There are options for tournaments, too. Just to have some mini events that will drum up some interest.”

Each arcade game will cost 50 cents, and proceeds will go toward the purchase of more cabinets.


Sip, the space’s most recent tenant, outgrew the place, property owner Peter Regnier said.

That restaurant’s co-owner, Kyle Dyer, had said the spot’s proximity to the First Presbyterian Church on Brinkerhoff Street limited their business to a tavern license, meaning hard liquor couldn’t be served.

1UP will have the same restriction, Chris said, requiring they serve beer and wine options only.

But that won’t be a problem, he said.

“Right from the get-go we’ll be able to offer eight beers on tap,” he said. “We plan on doing, maybe, half local.

“And then try to get creative with our drink selection.”

Other offerings will be hard ciders and mixed-beer and mixed-wine drinks, like sangria and mimosas.

For food, they plan to feature classic pub-style dishes, such as burgers, Philly cheesesteaks, kebabs, pizzas and fries.


Seating will be enough for around 30 people, and while additional staff may be considered in the future, the business owners will be the only employees for now.

Chris said the arcade bar will start with limited hours on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, until demand grows.

“As it gets busier, we’ll expand at that point,” he said.

“It’s really just feeling it out.”


1UP wants to be Rated E: For Everyone.

In Plattsburgh, there are restaurants, and then there is nightlife, Chris said. The venues that mix the two typically have a pool table and a dartboard.

“We’re doing this to be able to bridge that gap,” he said. “We are something different to do, and then we’ll also be able to serve food and drinks.”

With hours starting in the early afternoon and extending to the later evenings, Chris hopes the clientele will vary throughout the day.

“On a Saturday at noon, a family could come in here with their kids,” the owner said. “The parents could be nostalgic and say, ‘I played this when I was your age.’

“Then, we are going to try to keep the kitchen open later to try to capitalize on some of the college crowd,” he continued.

“We want to let the crowd and the community dictate who comes in here. Ideally, it’s for everyone.”

Email McKenzie Delisle:

Twitter: @McKenzieDelisle

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