ST. LOUIS — Bar K, a Kansas City-based dog park and bar concept, hopes to have a location open near the Grove entertainment district by this winter.
The company this week signed a lease to occupy about 23,000 square feet of the brick warehouse at 4565 McRee Avenue that developer Green Street St. Louis plans to begin rehabbing soon. The company will also use a roughly 2-acre outdoor space behind the building for a dog park.
The location would be Bar K’s second as it eyes a national expansion. Co-founder Leib Dodell said that in addition to St. Louis’ strong pet community, the company’s partnership with Nestlé Purina PetCare, based here, also drew it to St. Louis. Purina became a minority partner in Bar K with an investment in the company several months ago, Dodell said, and the pet product company also works with Bar K on marketing and dog menu design.
“Purina was excited about having one in their hometown,” Dodell said.
Bar K plans to host regular adoption events at Petfinder Park, a dedicated space that is part of a partnership with Purina-owned pet-adoption site Petfinder.com. Dodell expects the St. Louis location to be a regional draw, noting the average distance for Kansas City patrons is 10 miles.
Bar K opened in a temporary space in January 2017 and built its own location on Kansas City’s riverfront in August 2018. Dodell said it has already scouted a third location in Oklahoma City and is looking to expand elsewhere.