As summer heats up, here are some of the new things to see and places popping up in Springfield.

Culture Counter – 607 S. Pickwick

The corner of Cherry Street and Pickwick Ave. in Springfield was already a neighborhood hangout thanks to a few long-standing cozy eateries and the Cherry Picker coffee shop. Now, this corner is going through a growth spurt as new bars, music venues, and walk-up restaurants open shop. One of the new kids on the block is Culture Counter—a neighborhood grocery store that stocks its shelves with local and organic produce mostly from around southwest Missouri. But even more tempting is the constant rotation of homemade ice cream (including vegan options) and baked goods. With a focus on healthful eating, this shop also makes gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan grab-and-go lunch items and unveiled an impressive waffle bar at the start of July. Sweet potato waffles, gluten-free waffles and vegan waffles? We’ll take them all!

The Royal – 1427 E. Cherry St. Ste. B –

Everyone will swoon over the atmosphere and decor inside The Royal. This 41-seat bar and music venue is across the street from Culture Counter, and like the grocery store, the inside of The Royal is all things green. Except over here, you get a pop of pale pink and gold detailing. The menu, like the space itself, is small. When The Royal opened at the end of June, the menu featured your standard beer and wine selection with two batch cocktails—one with gin and one with vodka, but both refreshing and topped with soda water. While live music is a big part of this corner bar’s plan, COVID-19 has hit pause on that, which means the front patio has a little extra room now for guests who want to sip their craft cocktails outdoors while snacking on the finger foods on the menu. 

Sweet Boy’s Neighborhood Bar – 310 South Ave. –

Visitors of downtown Springfield said goodbye to the whiskey- and scotch-forward cocktail bar Scotch & Soda earlier this summer, but then quickly said hello to Sweet Boy’s. After giving the space a quick reboot, which included a new lineup of pinball machines, Sweet Boy’s opened for businesses in June. One owner is the same, Joshua Widner, while Josh Sullivan and Rogan Howitt are two new owners. With a menu heavy on cheap beers, house shots, and frozen irish coffees, the vibe and atmosphere here gives Springfieldians a little taste of New Orleans-style fun. Want a snack with your cocktail? Try the HellBoy—a frozen Irish coffee with an ice cream sandwich dunked on top.

Prehistoric Brewing Company – 1816 S. Glenstone Ave. –

A new brewery has now joined Springfield’s growing beer scene. Prehistoric Brewing Company opened this June thanks to the efforts of owners Keith Davis & Charley Norton and friends. As you’d expect based on the name, you’ll find a few familiar references on this beer menu. There’s the Apex Predator—a triple IPA, the Chocolate Mammoth Milk—a chocolate milk stout, and steam vents—a steam lager. Not super into beer? Try their cider, and be sure to bring your own snacks if you’re feeling peckish. There’s no kitchen in this brewery.