DeKALB – Jim Mason wants to bring an indoor sports simulator, bar and gaming facility to DeKalb so that young people have something to do.
Mason, DeKalb-based developer of Mason Properties, is looking to the city of DeKalb to amend its liquor licensing requirements. The amendment would allow for the property at 1500 Sycamore Road, formerly a Finest Furniture store, to serve alcohol and have slot machines. The business, dubbed Mason Indoor Golf DeKalb USA, would also have sports simulators and food, and allow patrons over and under 21 years of age. The ordinance currently only allows for such mixed-age use for bowling alleys.
“We can have gaming, machines, and booths to play golf and other sports,” Mason said Wednesday. “It will be a big draw not only for DeKalb, but for all of northern Illinois.”
The facility will have seven bays for the simulator terminals, 20 feet wide,
25 feet deep, and 16 feet high, Mason said. The simulators will be open to anyone, while the five slot machines and bar area will be for those age 21 or older. The business also will serve pizza.
Golfing will be offered exclusively on two of the simulators, and the remaining five will also golf, but also can take part in 12 other activities, Mason said, including soccer and baseball. There will be tables for patrons’ food and drinks. Space also will be available for private rental.
Mason said his plan is to have the facility be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with alcohol being cut off at the appropriate time, per city code.
The ordinance passed on first reading by an 8-0 vote, after Nicklas gave the action a positive recommendation.
“We’re concerned, and so is the owner, that there be proper surveillance and supervision of persons who might be under 21,” City Manager Bill Nicklas said before Monday’s vote. “It’s possible, and the proposed revision would address those expectations.”
Mason said he was in Rockford on Wednesday drawing up final designs with architects and engineers to present to the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission.
“What this will do for young boys, young girls, they can improve their skills on their sports,” Mason said. “The other thing that’s going to happen is all the colleges are going to have their people [come]. There’s something here for everybody.”
Mason’s proposal will now go to the Planning and Zoning Commission for a hospitality liquor license and other zoning requirements, which will then go to council for a future vote. He said, if all goes to plan, he would like to see the facility up and running by July.