A Chicago bar group will transform a shuttering sports bar into a live music and event space in West Town at breakneck speed. Lodge Management Group, known for Redhead Piano Bar, the Original Mother’s, and more, will open 551 Live in the closing Mahoney’s Pub & Grille space at 551 N. Ogden Avenue.
The new venue, opening April 4, will have a full bar, a DJ booth, and an outdoor patio space. Wannabe crooners can take the stage on Thursdays with backup from Live Band Karaoke. Owners plan to feature local bands on Friday nights, and regional acts on Saturdays. Spring acts include rock cover band Mike and Joe and Beatles tribute group American English. This summer, they’ll offer trolley rides to major festivals including Pitchfork and Lollapalooza.
An opening weekend celebration begins April 4 with $4 drink specials, including — of course — shots of Malort. The weekend will include performances from local act Shout Out and high-energy Chicago party band Hello Weekend. They’re not charging covers for the month of April.
Lodge Management Group dates back to 1970, and runs 12 Chicago venues including the Redhead Piano Bar in River North, the Lodge Tavern (known for occasional Bill Murray sightings), and the Original Mother’s. Mahoney’s, a sports bar with 22 TVs, plentiful craft beer and table games, officially closes on Sunday. The changeover to 551 Live happens quickly — just four days later.