Community members in Montrose will have a new location to spend some summer nights.
Mingle Sports Bar and Event Center, located at 235 N. First St. in downtown Montrose, will be opening its doors Friday, June 5 to the public.
Owners Armando Coronado and his wife, Carmen, have been working for nearly a year to bring the restaurant to life. The duo, and partners Irving Macias and Johnene Foster, wanted to bring a vibrant, popular location to Montrose.
“In my opinion, Montrose is the best place,” Armando said. “There’s nothing like Montrose. So my wife and I thought about it and decided, let’s make something for the town. Have something fun for everybody.”
The Coronados have waited months to open the establishment. The group hoped to open sooner, but closures and restrictions due to COVID-19 changed their plans.
Inside Mingle, there is a stage where ownership plans to host local bands and musicians for nights of music. Thirty-six flat screen TV’s are scattered throughout the restaurant for those looking to catch a sporting event. The walls are decorated with murals — painted by artist Jonathan Ramirez — that support local and professional sports. In the front of the building, there is a garage door, which can be opened on certain nights to allow an outside breeze to roll in during a night of dancing.
A surround system fills the restaurant from front to back, and is versatile. Certain sections can be turned off if needed.
The business venture took off in October of last year, when Carmen secured a restaurant liquor license after Montrose City Council approved the application.
Although sports bar is part of the official name, Foster, Coronado, and Macias don’t view the business as just a sports bar. The three described Mingle as a “family restaurant with the bonus of a bar.”
The outlook explains their target audience, which is simple: community. The trio welcomes residents of all ages, hoping the restaurant can serve as a family night, a place for friends to hangout, or somewhere people can dance for the evening.
“We want it to be for everybody,” Foster said.
“It’s somewhere where we can have a fun night and fun evening,” said Armando.
It’s also why “event center” is part of the brand. Versatility and availability is part of the business plan. Anybody can rent the building for a specific event — quinceañera, birthday party — and have the establishment to themselves for the night.
The bar, Armando said, will give people a chance to enjoy a plate of wings with a beer and listen to live music.
Mingle’s versatility and features are a reason why Foster has strong confidence in the business.
“There’s nothing else like this in this town,” said Foster, general manager of Mingle.
“We want people to say, ‘wow, this is where I want to drink my beer,’” Foster added.
Foster joined as general manager in February. She has experience in the business, previously serving as general manager at a restaurant in Disneyland for 13 years in the late 1980s.
While working at AeroCare, Foster was presented with the opportunity to run Mingle.
“My passion had always been to directly work with people, not over the phone,” Foster said. “To see people happy. This was the perfect opportunity for me to be able to do that.”
Macias will serve as chef/kitchen manager at Mingle, and is a part-owner. Macias said Mingle wants to focus on a “simple” menu that will feature burgers, wraps, salads, quesadillas, and tacos. This helps take away longer wait times and gives those who are seeking a quick bite for lunch a simple solution, Macias said.
Being locally rooted was important to the group. The operating team decided to stay local, hiring residents from Montrose to make up the staff. Mingle also features a selection of local craft beer.
Armando and Carmen have strong local ties. The two have been residents in Montrose for the last 22 years.
“Everyone that works here is from Montrose,” Foster said. “It’s not like owners coming in from out of town that people don’t know. People know what they’re going to expect and what they’re going to get.”
The group has contacted a few local musicians already — Donny Morales, Paul Chamberlain, Neon Sky — to play on certain nights for the community.
Mingle staff plan to be vigilant to keep safety measures in place at this time — eliminating wait lines and keeping the entrance and exit separate.
The curiosity for Mingle was apparent during the closures, Foster said. People would walk by and ask questions, wondering when the place would eventually open.
“That has not stopped at all,” Foster said. “Even with COVID-19, people are still walking by the door wondering when we’re opening.”
Those questions can be answered when Mingle opens at 11 a.m. this Friday. The restaurant is closed Tuesday and Wednesday, but is open Sunday, Monday, and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Friday and Saturday, Mingle is open from 11 a.m. to 12 a.m.
Under the county’s variance to COVID-19 restrictions, Mingle can serve up to 50 people at a time, which will be done on a first-come, first-served basis, Armando said.
Several local businesses contributed their services to Mingle: Owen from High Mesa Communications; Matt, CNM Security; Fernando Martinez, King Concrete; Vanessa Gurule, administration; Hugo Suarez, ItemWorks; Tom Chamberlain; Preston Turk, Performance Plumbing and Heating; Mauricio Morillo, MnM Drywall; Ricardo Medina; Furniture Worx.