What is BO?
BO – a bar (you can even call it a beer bar) in Kaunas Old Town, with a long history, 20 varieties of draught beer, laid-back and friendly staff, some unforgettable artistic customers and great atmosphere! BO opens its blue door every night at 5PM and welcomes you in to simply relax, be yourself and have a blast. You will find a drink to enjoy, board games, table football, a Dutch Shuffleboard, old French posters on the walls, a mini library, and everything else you might need, whether you bring a group of friends with you or come by yourself.
“Baaaah. Bull***t”, you might say, “who the hell goes to a bar alone?” Seriously, feel free to come to BO by yourself and sit at any table. Not having met your table friends before won’t be a problem: we can ensure you that they’ll welcome you into their company with a smile (and then you all can engage in a nice discussion debating existentialist issues – okay, maybe something else – and have a great time together). Also worth mentioning: at BO, beer is served at the “AGITPUNKT”, right by the entrance/exit, which gets harder and harder for BO customers to find as the night goes on. We’ll let you in on a little secret: there’s a place at BO that not everyone is able to discover on their first visit – the toilet. You have to pull the string to flush it, just like at grandma’s. If you’ve found the loo – congratulations! – you can consider yourself an advanced BO customer. Okay, that’s probably it, motivated to visit us yet? Check the day (you can find the list of what goes on at BO on what day of the week), check your watch (we open at 5PM) and off on the journey!
BO week consists of:
- Monday: BO hosts unofficial table football tournaments, allowing players to test their skills playing in randomly generated teams, usually with the most popular BO drink on the line.
-Tuesday: special offers on drinks and pizzas| TWO FOR TUESDAY.
- Wednesday: Dutch Shuffleboard practice, featuring tips from “the Daddy” Rolandas Dereškevičius himself.
- Thursday: cheaper shots and cocktails, so that university students can allow themselves to try some more interesting drinks instead of chugging their usual beer :)
- On weekends, visitors of BO have the opportunity to enjoy live music, DJ appearances and more at BO GYVAI, BO STIPRIAI, BO REPOVAI, BO LAUŽYTAI, BO KYLANT AUKŠTAI, BO TEISINGAI, BO MINIMALIAI, BO GILIAI and other events.
The Short History of BO (for people who like to read and want to know more about the place they spend their nights in):
„What is BO? “ When we started thinking about this, each of us came up with several different answers in our heads. BO is such a unique phenomenon (we all agreed on that part), which, to everyone who’s been involved with it in one way or another, means something else, making it hard to put into words. Therefore, we’ll present the answers by a few people, without whom, BO wouldn’t be what it is, or wouldn’t even be at all.
Co-founder of BO, Deivis, and the inspiration, Claudia: “We wanted to create a place to spend time with friends and feel great. The name BlueOrange was inspired by one of our favourite poets at the time, Paul Éluard. One of his lines read: “Ir Le monde est bleu comme une orange” (meaning “Earth is blue like an orange”). We also recall that at the beginning there were two sentences on the walls of BO: Éluard’s line and “Let nobody tell you what to do!” (in English). However, State Language Law was really quick to forbid it, and we had to paint over the writings; we then decided to convey the spirit of BO by pictures of the style of Keith Haring”.
Co-founder of BO, Ramūnas: “BO is home to me.”
Head of staff Virgita: “Job at BO to me is an opportunity to stay young, never leave the rocking chair and an opportunity to see if business done from the heart and maintaining a friendly, human contact would work. Originality of BO consists of its unique atmosphere, artistic and friendly BO people, and the mix of our amazing customers. Sometimes it feels like it was not us (former, current or future BO people) who create it, but as if it grows by itself, evolves, and leads us down its distinctive road, which we should not tamper with or we would ruin everything.”
BO’s elder brother Žilvinas: “I never had the choice of whether to associate myself with BO; it’s just always been here and like a younger sister would steal a good part of parents’ attention. When I came of age, I voluntarily joined people working for BO and it was one of the best decisions in my life. Even though I live kind of far and work from a distance, coming back here is euphoric – so many excellent people in one place! And I don’t mean just the customers – the staff is awesome. The mood, the atmosphere… BO is very dear to me.”
BO will celebrate its 20th birthday soon, and since it is not that little for a bar, we’d like you to think of that number as if it was the age of a person (we want to remain young). The history of BO starts in the gloomy 1994, when there were still enough parking spaces by blocks of flats to park your car in Lithuania. Speaking of night life (which was still practically non-existent), places like “Skliautas”, “Kregždutė”, and other restaurants had just opened. But those were the places you wouldn’t even think of going to without wearing a tuxedo, unless you like being looked at as a weirdo. No cool treats like chilli stew, cappuccinos or apple pie (which found place on BO’s menu). Simply put, it was a sad time.
Everything started with Deivis coming back from Germany after having his first visit at a very fun, tolerant bar with a brilliant atmosphere, which left him an impression (let us remind you that back then travelling abroad was rare for us and people were a bit narrow-minded). The seed was sown. The three heroes of our story – Deivis, Ričardas and Ramūnas – met by the restaurant “Neris”, where Deivis informed his friends of his vision – a democratic, tolerant place, where anyone was welcome to have a few beers without formal wear, no white table-covers, simply like at a friend’s place. The idea was well received, even though it was
something completely new (neither bloke had ever even thought of opening a bar), and thus they decided to start working on making this happen.
History of BO
A very tough step was up ahead – the premises for what would later become BO were found, but the owners demanded three flats in return. So, our heroes started looking for flats, going back and forth through Kaunas (let’s not forget Google and the real estate site Aruodas.lt did not exist yet), until finally, they found them, and the deal was done. Like that, BO little by little became a reality and opened its doors.
The old customers probably remember this – at first, there were only two rooms. But even so, the crew had a hell of a job to do – worked whole nights, tore down walls, changed floors, installed a door to the street (at first BO only had an entrance from the back), concreted the stairs. They were painting, repairing, hammering, buying installations, borrowing furniture – bringing some tables from their parents, which they used when they first started the bar.
So, BO opened, and at the time, it was something different – self-service, no table waiting, music that was brought in by the customers (there was a double cassette deck, the bartenders played the music picked by the crowd) and all other then-shocking decisions made BO a one of a kind, unforgettable place.
Upon entering BO you could witness this – smoke from the ceiling down to the waist (smoking in bars wasn’t banned yet) and, to check which tables had free seats, you had to stoop; a long line at the bar (since beer was poured out of bottles, there was no draught beer yet!), four kinds of beer, and food: chilli stews, the recipe of which was imported from abroad, Asian stews, cappuccinos and apple pie.
As time went by, BO expanded – more rooms were opened, in 2004 we started organising events, the choice of beer grew, competition started, many new bars opened by former BO customers. In 2009, Virgita became the one in charge and BO turned into a family business. The light that was slightly dimmed for a short while, shone bright once again (new shining sign) and parties started to take place every night :)