Owner: David Lembo
Established: February 14, 2020
Based in: Nutley, New Jersey
Link to website: www.jerseyaxehouse.com
Ready. Set. Throw.
There’s something axe-citing happening in Nutley, New Jersey.
Inside an industrial condo complex sits a warehouse concealing an axe-throwing venue for New Jersey’s locals.
Jersey Axe House is an underground facility focused on promoting and teaching the enigmatic sport of axe-throwing.
“I found a niche market in the northern New Jersey area and wanted to focus on teaching people the sport of axe-throwing,” said owner of the Jersey Axe House, David Lembo.
Lembo first tried axe-throwing when he was just a young kid, on a fishing and hunting trip with his dad. Now, many years later, Lembo said that he admires the camaraderie and competition of the sport, which is what led him to opening his own facility on Feb. 14, 2020.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, just one month later, he had to close up the shop he’d spent many weeks working to open.
Although axe-throwing may not always sound safe, Lembo believes that he’s able to correct that common misconception with his space.
“We aim to create a welcoming and safe environment,” Lembo said. “It’s important that people are going to a reputable place where they have the trust of the person teaching them how to throw.”
Jersey Axe House welcomes throwers as young as 12 years old to participate and allows customers to bring their own food and drink.
Before the pandemic, Lembo said that he was able to host events, parties, and corporate gatherings with up to 40 people.
Though currently open, the small business is only able to accommodate 10 to 15 people at a time.
“We were closed for under five months and it was tough,” Lembo said. “We finally got to reopen on July 2nd and we were lucky to get two to three people in a day, if that.”
Despite having to close shortly after his grand opening, Lembo hasn’t let the setbacks of the pandemic slow him down.
In fact, the Axe House is getting ready to host their first ‘Axetober’ fest which will take place on Oct. 11. The socially distanced event will run from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. and is meant to re-introduce the Axe House to the Jersey community.
Lembo said he doesn’t plan to charge visitors for axe throwing, though food and beer will be available to purchase.
Hopeful and optimistic for the events yet to come, Lembo leaves this message of hope with his New Jersey community: