Griffith's trendy arcade bar Twincade is home to craft beer, hipster karaoke, pinball, vintage arcade games, and also online television shows that film there.
The nostalgic bar at 108 N. Broad St. in downtown Griffith recently debuted "Twincadia — An Arcade Bar Reality Show" on YouTube. The first episode shows the bar staff building an arcade cabinet for New Holland Brewery's release of Hoptronix double IPA, then averting of a crisis that would have shut down all 20 taps during a busy Friday night and a bartender's participation in a Prohibition-era cocktail competition at Doc's Smokehouse and Craft Bar in Dyer.
"The show is about the behind the scenes of running an arcade bar, focusing on everything from keeping the arcade running, the kitchen, the bar, the back of house, et cetera, and general silliness of our staff and owners," owner Philip Sidener said. "Each episode we try to have a loose story line."
Sidener is no novice to making TV shows or YouTube series. He filmed a series of YouTube videos on the Twincade build-out that he shared on social media to build up excitement for Northwest Indiana's first arcade bar and also shoots "The Retro Gaming Game Show" in the back room of Twincade every other month.
Now in its eighth episode, the "Retro Gaming Game Show" pits contestants against each other in trivia about retro video games while they drink craft beer. In a head-to-head contest, they answer questions like, "What Mortal Kombat character is known for saying, 'Get over here?'" and "What developer made Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game?"
Sidener is looking for local filmmakers to take over filming of "Twincadia," which he will continue to edit. The show prominently features his wife and co-owner, Patricia Sidener, General Manager Michelle Reed, game tech Eric Lambert and cook Erik Hinds.
"Future story lines will be Twincade brewing our own in-house small-batch beer, getting the licensing and equipment and such setup and testing recipes," he said. "Another episode in the works, two of our employees will square off in a professional wrestling match. And much more."
Twincade is running the show on YouTube and will use social media ads to promote it nationally. After enough episodes are filmed, it should be released on DVD.
"Inspiration comes mostly from the fun we have here and the close-knit, family-type atmosphere of our staff," he said. "We are all having such a great time running the bar we want to document. Plus, reality shows have been done for everything else and we thought an arcade bar is a great setting. Not to mention, I have strong DIY ethic so when I thought of the idea I just went for it without thought."