By Devan Grimsrud
Updated March 11, 2016
Credit: Courtesy Works Progress Studio

Set to open later this month in Minneapolis’ Northeast Arts District is Water Bar. And no, it’s not some ironic, hipster name it’s a description of what they serve there—water. And the H2O is free and there’s as much as you can drink.

Water Bar first hit the scene in 2014 as a public art project started by Shanai Matteson and Colin Kloecker of Works Progress Studio. They doled out local tap waters at events all around the Twin Cities, pop-up style. As people tried waters from different counties throughout the metro area, conversation flowed about water-related issues like pollution, scarcity, environmental injustice and sustainability. Although few could have imagined Water Bar would morph into something bigger, it did. Over the last couple of years, the pseudo art installation engaged volunteers, other artists, and the community – growing into an idea that needed its own space to thrive and really make an impact.

The goal of this new brick-and-mortar studio and taproom is to serve the community local and regional tap waters in order to get conversation going about the importance of our water systems. It will also provide a working space with curated local art hanging on the walls – think of it as a coffee shop, just with water in lieu of lattes. Sip on as much water as you wish and tip your ‘barista’ to support charities focused on environmental sustainability in the community and around the country.

If you’re interested in supporting this project, check out Water Bar & Public Studio’s SIP Fund.