Lodgic brings kitschy Christmas Miracle Popup Bar experience to Champaign

Nationally known Miracle Bar Pop-Up is making its way to Champaign at Lodgic

A miracle has arrived on Neil Street in Champaign just in time for the holiday season.

Lodgic Champaign has transformed its cafe area into a pop-up cocktail lounge known as Miracle on Neil. With themed drinks, 30,000 lights and classic holiday tunes on the sound system, Miracle on Neil Street is sure to be a popular gathering place with grown-up friends, colleagues and relatives.

“We lean toward kitschy Christmas,” said Teresa Brown, executive director of Lodgic Champaign.

A variety of drinks hang out at the cozy cocktail pop-up bar at Lodgic in Champaign. Officially opens on Black Friday through New Year’s Eve. chambanamoms.com photo

Miracle on Neil Street will make its debut on Black Friday and will be open through New Year’s Eve. Reservations are recommended; make reservations by visiting everydaykitchen.com/champaign or calling 217-607-1960. Miracle on Neil Street hours will be 4-10 pm, Wednesday-Sunday.

The Miracle Bar concept is popular across the country; it can be found in 39 states and six countries this year. Lodgic will be the only Illinois location for Miracle Bar this year.

Although the Miracle pop-up bar is designed for adults, the decor will be up in the cafe for the duration of the Miracle Bar run. Families are welcome to come in and take photos during regular daylight hours, Brown said.

Signature drinks cost between $10-12. Each Miracle on Neil Street cocktail boasts cheerful holiday flavors presented in unique mugs or signature glasses, such as the dinosaur wearing a Santa hat. Some of the glasses can also be bought.

It’s just as fun to smell the drinks as it is to consume them. The drink “Santa’s Little Helper” smells of winter.

The menu includes “Holiday Spiked Chai” (Jamaican rum, coffee liqueur, amaretto, chai, almond milk, tiki bitters, served hot); “Jingle Ball Nog” (cognac, cream sherry, vanilla and nutmeg); “Snowball Old Fashioned” (rye whiskey, gingerbread syrup, duo of bitters, orange essence); “Elfing Around” (Prosecco, gin, mulled reduction, grapefruit shrub, orange bitters); and “Christmapolitan” (vodka, elderflower, dry vermouth, spicy cranberry sauce, lime, rosemary, absinthe mist).

Two shots also make the festive drinks menu. There is a “Nice Shot” (rum, peppermint tea, chocolate) and a “Nice Shot” (bourbon, cinnamon).

Another insider photo at the Lodgic Miracle Bar
A team from chambanamoms.com attended a preview of the Miracle Bar even though the decorating was still underway. chambanamoms.com photo

Brown and Lodgic hope guests don their best holiday dresses and duds (or themed clothes) and come to Miracle Bar more than once. On some evenings there will be entertainment including Gary the tall elf. Some nights will have themes, such as dressing as your favorite Christmas movie character, Brown said. The full schedule has not been announced yet.

Guests are encouraged to “make a night of it” and head over to Miracle Bar before or after dining at Everyday Kitchen. The restaurant and its main bar will remain open separately from the Miracle Bar.

The overall theme is kitschy holiday fun. The features include a beautiful gingerbread house in life size and seating in cozy booths with winter time in the cabin.

Scene at loggic

“We thought everyone could use a dose of Christmas cheer and a festive drink or two this year,” says Head Chef and Executive Chef Michael Maggi.

In addition to fun, Lodgic will also use the pop-up as a way to spread cheer in the community. It will serve as an Angel Tree site for Cunningham Children’s Home and a collection point for a coat drive benefiting Courage Connection. It will also participate in the Eastern Illinois Foodbank’s 12 Days of Giving, a coordinated food drive that begins on Giving Tuesday (Nov. 29) and ends on Dec. 15.

Proceeds from the pop-up bar will benefit Lodgic’s non-profit partnership.

The Miracle Bar concept was born in 2014 when owner Greg Boehm decided to halt construction on what would become his new East Village cocktail bar called Mace and turned the unfinished space into a pop-up bar serving holiday-themed drinks among over- the- top Christmas decorations. This year has the debut in Champaign. For more info, check out miraclepopup.com

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