A sports bar opening Monday in Lansing is taking a different approach from the competition. There will be no alcohol served at Wing Heaven Sports Haven.
People recovering from substance abuse can have difficulty finding a place to socialize where alcohol isn’t served. Wing Heaven Sports Haven co-owner Ayanna Ballard says the idea is to give those people and others a place to go with friends. “Some people who are on probation, they can’t go to places where there’s alcohol," Ballard explains, so this would offer them a place where they can go and they can be safe, and they won’t get in trouble.”
The business is also taking job applications from people in recovery or on parole. Several have already been hired. One of the kitchen managers, Josh Carr, describes himself as 17 months sober. “We’re setting it up so it’s family friendly, recovery friendly, and still have the ability to come watch sports, play pool, air hockey, things of that nature," Carr says. "Individuals who still want to drink, they have their places to go. It’s not saying that we don’t want those individuals here; obviously, we want people to come enjoy our food and have a great time.”
The service will initially be carry-out only. When allowed full capacity, the location on South MLK Boulevard will hold up to 160 people.