We've been hearing it for quite a while: Deep Ellum is back. While we're the first ones to be excited by that idea, we try to temper our effusiveness as best we can. But we gotta admit, these past few weeks have been CRAY-ZEE. Ever heard those stories about how they used to close Elm St. on the weekends, the same way they do on Sixth St. in Austin? Well, the influx of bars, restaurants and people has been enough to even get the old geezers feeling nostalgic. So to hell with the Old Deep Ellum. Here are 50 reasons we have to celebrate the New Deep Ellum — which, we think it's fair to say, has well and truly arrived.
1. All the secret free parking spots have been taken over by pushy valets.
2. Even Big Jon Daniel has to pay for parking.
3. There are almost as many horse-drawn carriages as Ubers cruising down Commerce Street.
4. The sidewalk is now a parking lot for motorcycles. $5 a wheel, please.
5. Yes, you did just see Leon Bridges busking in the motorcycle parking lot.
6. Plus that New Orleans jazz band, whose songs you’re starting to recognize.
7. You just saw three people drive the wrong way down Elm Street, and two more on Commerce.
8. They’re probably confused because the city cares enough to have painted lines on the street.
9. Or they’re from Addison.
10. A new business opens up and Central Track doesn't cover the opening.
11. Robert Wilonsky needs an assistant to keep track of all the property changes.
12. TV stations take a break from Blue Bell coverage to ask, “Is Deep Ellum back?”
13. By the time you get your food at Buzzbrews, you're no longer buzzed.
14. Keyboard Bob has to explain his whole life story in order to get a ride.
15. Terry MYSFEESMO’s latest magic trick is to pull earplugs out of his beard.
16. Club Dada finally hired an adequate number of bartenders.
17. And you’re still waiting for your drink.
18. You’ve lost track of which bar Blake Ward is DJing at tonight, because he DJs at one in Deep Ellum every goddamn night.
19. The Will Rap for Weed lady is just reading from a dictionary now because, man, she doesn't even have to try anymore.
20. A new band plays their first-ever show on a Thursday, and there are at least 60 people in the room.
21. You’re even showing up to that Vice Palace show early because you want to make sure you get in.
22. A stampede of stiletto-wearing "woo girls" gets stuck every other block on the inhospitable pavement.
23. Your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds are clogged with shitty iPhone concert videos, and none of them are from the show you’re at.
24. Your tattoos and black clothes stick out like a sore thumb in the sea of Sperrys and sundresses.
25. You start running into folks you haven't seen since the last time Red Blood Club closed.
26. You run into someone from Denton.
27. You even ran into your dad a minute ago.
28. But your dad isn't SachseDad.
29. You just overheard the third conversation about fantasy football in the past 10 minutes.
30. And you're not on the patio at Three Links.
31. Twilite Lounge is so full that Corby Davidson can't get a drink at the bar.
32. The people sitting in front of Anvil Pub are complaining about how things have changed.
33. You met someone who works in marketing, and they're not a concert promoter.
34. All the panhandlers have closed shop at 11 p.m. because the Pecan Lodge dinner rush helped them meet their quota for the day.
35. You have a 20-minute wait to get in the door and you're not at Black Swan.
36. You don’t actually know the name of the bar you’re waiting to get into.
37. It’s called Armoury D.E. and, yes, it has a patio.
38. It’s past midnight and you don’t have to go to Glazed Donuts to stay upright.
39. Because holy shit, that fried chicken at Brick and Bones.
40. Even The Boiler Room thinks it’s going to be a restaurant.
41. You’ve actually thought about staying hydrated because everywhere has free water coolers now.
42. It’s cooler on the patios in the middle of the summer than it is inside the bars.
43. You’re placing bets on when you're going to see George W. Bush at Cane Rosso.
44. You’ve spent over 20 minutes of your night giving lost people directions.
45. The American Spirit coupon guy has run out of everything.
46. Off the Record is completely packed, and you don't know anyone except the bartenders.
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47. Well, and the four people you've been on Tinder dates with.
48. This is the third bar you've been to with a photo booth.
49. It’s a Sunday and you don't need a water balloon fight to get a thousand people in the neighborhood.
50. Not a single person has mentioned “The Old Days of Deep Ellum” in three and a half weeks.