Aug. 3, 2019

By Joe Miller, Co-founder at Haven Game Cafe

When most people hear “board games”, they tend to go one of two directions in their mind – classics like Sorry, Trouble, and everyone’s favorite family-destroyer, Monopoly, or card games with cultish followings like Magic: The Gathering or Pokémon. In either case, most people think board games aren’t made for them. Lee’s Summit residents Ryan Cochran, Joe Miller, and Taylor Qualls created Haven Game Café to show that isn’t the case.

Board game design has experienced something of a renaissance in the last decade. Ever since The Settlers of Catan found its way from the desk of a German dentist in 1995 into the homes of most American families nowadays, designers have been getting smarter and making better games. Completely new genres have been created to appeal to new audiences – including cooperative games where everyone plays on one team trying to beat the game together, games designed to only be played by two players, and party games made to connect friends or bring out the hilarity of mundane daily experiences we all share.

Game cafés (coffeshops or bars with curated game libraries and dedicated staff to teach the games) have emerged from this surge in gaming popularity as well, and this is what Haven Game Café is bringing to Lee’s Summit. Haven will be open every Saturday starting August 10 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. inside Ahadu Coffeeshop located at 1531 NW Douglas St. (just north of the theaters on Douglas). Ahadu will serve their delicious crepes and incredible fair-trade coffee while $5 gets you access to Haven’s library of board games for the night. Haven staff will recommend games and teach you anything you want to play.

This is a great excuse to step away from the TV or your phones and have some fun. Ryan, Joe, and Taylor are working hard to make sure anyone can enjoy their time at Haven – high school students, college students, families, couples, and people of all ages. Whether you want to battle your friends with grand strategy, fall off your chair laughing at each other’s absurdity, or try to save the world together in a cooperative game, they’ve got you covered. They believe there is a game anyone can have fun playing, and it’s their mission to find and teach you that game.