Pittsburgh’s new scary pop-up bar is a ‘Nightmare on Forbes’
Skeletons hanging from the ceiling, screaming faces on the walls, and skull lights are just some of the scary decor at Nightmare on Forbes, a pop-up Halloween-themed bar that opens Friday on Forbes Avenue in Downtown Pittsburgh.
Wes Craven’s Freddy film “Nightmare on Elm Street” was the inspiration.
“I got a lot of ideas from watching that film and other horror movies,” said Jamie Apgar, the artist who designed the inside of the establishment. “I wanted it to look realistic with faces coming out of the wall and life-like skeletons.”
This space has been used as a themed-pop-up-bar in the past. In November, it was the Jingle Bar, a holiday establishment. In April, it served as “Bar of Thrones,” named after the popular HBO series “Game of Thrones.”
Each pop-up version donates part of proceeds to a charity. The Christmas bar raised more than $5,000 for the local chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. The “Bar of Thrones” raised over $3,000 for I Carry My Sister’s Heart, a non-profit that helps families cope with cancer, said Shane Wilps, manager and operator.
“We try to do good by helping raise money for charities,” Wilps said.
The bar will have live entertainment on Fridays and Saturdays and other events going on throughout the week such as horror movie trivia.
Be on the lookout Friday night around 8 p.m. in Market Square, where a banshee will be handing out giveaways.
“She will be scary looking,” Wilps said.
Nightmare will be open until Nov. 2 to celebrate Day of the Dead, a celebratory holiday in Mexico to remember the dead. The cocktail list includes a Pumpkin Head (Bulleit rye whiskey, pumpkin, demerara, and bitters) as well as the Krueger (Tanqueray gin, lemon, agave and sparkling apple cider). They will have six beer choices.
Guests can dine on Freddy Fingers (french fries with cheese) and Twisted Souls (fried pretzels with honey mustard).
The next holiday pop-up bar will open on Light Up Night, Nov. 22.
“This bar is a unique situation,” Wilps said. “Because this space was available, we wanted to do some different things here. It is fun because it’s always something different, but it also takes a lot of work to change over from one to another.”
JoAnne Klimovich Harrop is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact JoAnne at 412-320-7889, [email protected] or via Twitter .