The reports of Club Jäger's rebirth are greatly exaggerated.
On Wednesday, the bar owned by Julius DeRoma, a financial backer in 2016 of ex-Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke, staged a "soft (re)opening" event, promising the bar would go back to its "original roots," a description which apparently meant "no stupid collectivist games."
The note promoting the reopening signed off, "Vielen Dank!," a German expression of gratitude.
The bar's first night back since a staff walk-out was scheduled to run from 6:00 to 10:00 p.m. Asked early that night if the bar would stay open later, or if it had any customers at that time, manager Josh Portwood declined to get into specifics.
Thursday night, at least a handful of people showed up. To protest.
And in a way that would be easily seen, and unmistakable. A lighted sign projected on the side of the building identified the North Loop establishment as a "Nazi Pub," which, the sign continued, should "Fuck Off."
The action was intended to alert travelers in town for the Super Bowl, who might not be aware of the owner's reputation. One activist present said the group was "incredibly disappointed" to learn of the bar's attempted resurgence, but "not surprised someone like Julius DeRoma would try to exploit the Super Bowl for profit."
Though perhaps not as much profit as he'd hoped: The activists were still on the scene when the bar was closed for the night around 9:15 p.m. The activist confirmed those assembled to protest enjoyed watching Club Jäger's door shut again.
The activist said they'd been to the bar on multiple occasions prior to news of DeRoma's right-wing leanings, but won't be going back under current ownership unless it's for another protest event.
As for those who've taken jobs to bring Club Jäger back under DeRoma's ownership, the activist observed that the city has plenty of openings for shifts in the restaurant industry if those workers are looking.
"There are server jobs available," the activist said. "It's disappointing that people would choose short-term employment to work for a white supremacist. And it will be very short-term employment."
A call placed to the bar's number shortly after 10:00 p.m. went unanswered.
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