Brian Torres and Chandon (CK) Sanders, both Fort Worth natives, have been friends for years and have at times worked in similar fields. A few short months ago, an opportunity to do a joint business venture was presented. Through a chance discussion with the now former owner of a local bar, Torres made an informal offer to buy the bar and after receiving an acceptance, Torres and Sanders became bar owners a very short time later.
The two longtime friends are now co-owners of The Local, a bar located in Fort Worth’s vibrant West 7th Street district. Seeing great opportunity, they have moved quickly to improve operations and service to the current clientele in the surrounding residential and entertainment district while also beginning the process to market to a more diverse audience. “Our goal is to create a fun, professional experience that will appeal to a diverse audience,” said Torres.
The Local is not the first business venture for either man. Torres is owner/operator of Hooky Bar while Sanders owns and operates Tilt Work, SEO Runners and Carbon Marque, digital agencies for web development, digital marketing and advertising. He also invests in other businesses. “We believe that forging our experiences in the bar industry and marketing industry gives us an advantage towards having success,” says Sanders. “We’ve known each other for a long time, and we respect what each other bring to the table,” says Torres.
With their efforts and plans to attract a new audience, they definitely want to embrace the current patrons. “We obviously want to target the clientele that have called The Local their home, as well as all the service industry that come in nightly to support the bar and its bartenders. But we also know that on any given weekend or holiday, there are thousands of bargoers walking around West 7th and they’re looking for a bar to go into and enjoy their night out. We believe we’ve done an amazing job with the marketing and social media side that targets all groups,” said Sanders.
The Local was one of the first neighborhood bars in the West 7th bar district. It grew because it has a great following from the regulars who visit the bar daily. According to Torres, “Our goal is to be welcoming to the regulars who helped build the bar’s reputation and add to it with the growing population that’s going in the West 7th area. Though it is a great neighborhood bar, it has plenty of character to provide a great late-night experience as well.”
Torres and Sanders have spent some time evaluating and assessing the bar and how they plan to improve it. Their biggest goal at the current moment is to update the bar. Many of the games and equipment are outdated, so they are working to bring new life to the bar with a huge interior facelift. They are also looking to the future and plan to eventually explore the possibilities of using the patio to grow and capture the attention of those walking by. Asked what made them purchase a bar together, Sanders explained “A bar has always been a place that friends can meet up to unwind, to celebrate or just get away and have some time for self-reflection.” Torres continued, “We both believed that the two of us could come together and create that atmosphere that could bring people together and have a wonderful experience time and time again.” Though some of the changes are small, some will entail more, but they plan to remain open while they work.
Torres and Sanders love the local vibe of Fort Worth and what the city has to offer. To keep with the vibe, they use local breweries and Texas products. Their loyalties run deep for their home city and state. In addition to running their various business enterprises, the two partners also believe in giving back to their communities. Torres recently became a director for Children’s Charities of Fort Worth and Sanders is a board member of the new National Juneteenth Museum to be located in Fort Worth.
The two entrepreneurs noted that their ambition doesn’t stop with this latest purchase of The Local. They are already making plans to expand their business ventures in the near future.
Visit The Local: 2800 Bledsoe Street, Fort Worth, TX 76107