Harlem's Alibi Lounge stays open; owner, landlord reach deal

One of the city's only gay- and Black-owned bars is officially staying open.

Harlem's Alibi Lounge was at risk of shutting its doors due to the pandemic's economic fallout. But both the bar's owner and the landlord have reached an agreement and signed a new five-year lease.

FOX 5 NY first reported the story in March.

Bar owner Alexi Minko needed to come up with about $15,000 by April. And he did it. Minko said it was all due to a perfect storm of events that included nicer weather for outdoor dining, the increased capacity limit for indoor dining, and about $6,000 in donations.

He said this outcome shows that there is kindness in the world.

"Despite everything that can happen, everything we can see, to witness the fact that members of the Jewish community from Brooklyn is helping someone from the Black, gay community up north in Harlem is quite something," Minko said. "It shows that we are all in this together."

RELATED: Harlem's Alibi Lounge gets new LGBTQ pride flags

Minko gave a lot of credit to the generosity of his landlord, Mordy Getz, who forgave four months' rent and discounted the rest. Getz is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor who said he believes everyone deserves a safe space, especially those who are sometimes treated like outsiders in their own community.

Minko said the GoFundMe raised more than enough money for him to stay open, so he turned around and donated $1,000 to the nonprofit Transgender Law Center.

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