Kristin Dennis of electro-pop outfit Née slides a Stiegel Radler across the Fortune Teller Bar's wood rail and recounts, "Sam Coffey and I were just walking down the neighborhood alleys, really hot and wanting to swim really bad. We had no pool. And no money." It's an introduction that mirrors an urban take on a Steinbeck landscape. "We thought we could dig a hole, turn that into a pool." She angles her head from left-to-right as she narrates several pool ideas inspected for potential backyard ponds. Then the idea struck.
"Let's turn a dumpster into a pool!" says Dennis, who operates the bar. "It was kind of thrown together because it was so last minute. We made punch and we had the fire department fill up the dumpster and we just waited to see what happened. It was the most fun thing we did all year."
This year The Fortune Teller Bar expands its pool into a sidewalk celebration. "We line the dumpster with a tarp -- it's not just a dumpster full of water. We have a giant, half ton Army truck that our friend is driving over that will be the deck. We'll have a really nice deck area up there. Stairs and everything. Seating all the way around. We actually build it out."
"We'll have tents outside, three different flavors of boozy popsicles, watermelon punch, all this summery stuff. We'll also have our B.Y.O.P. special which is "Bring Your Own Pineapple. If you bring your own pineapple, we carve it out and fill it with whatever you want."
As Dennis continues to build the Fortune Teller Bar's reputation she is conscious of its place on Cherokee. "I think this neighborhood is cool because everyone is doing a bunch of things at once. We are an environment that supports the community, not one that wants to compete with it."
"We want to be the place you go before and after the shows. I think, as a musician, that's really cool. We can not only attract musicians and have them come here and socialize, we can also not compete with what they are doing in other places."
The Fortune Teller Bar opens its pool this Sunday June 6, at noon. The address is 2635 Cherokee Street. Come with a pineapple and boozy dreams of whiskey-soaked fruit.
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