Bloomington residents are upset over a tweet issued by Kilroy’s Recess as well as an outdoor chalk sign posted a week ago.
The bar on Kirkwood, which replaced Kilroy’s on Kirkwood, reopened Thursday. Near midnight on Friday, the business’ Twitter account tweeted at billionaire sports investor and Indiana University alumnus Mark Cuban: “Come check out your old place. Spoiler: we got rid of the wet t-shirt contests, but kept the underage girls.”
The bar’s website states: “Kilroy’s Recess is Bloomington’s only 18 and over nightclub.”
Bloomington City Council member Susan Sandberg said she found the tweet offensive and indicative of a larger issue in Bloomington and Indiana University.
Commenters on Twitter asked if Kilroy’s Recess cared to explain the tweet. Eight hours later, Kilroy’s Recess responded: “Not really.”
Twitter users and Bloomington residents took to social media to voice their concern that the tweet promoted rape culture.
Both Kilroy’s Recess’ and Kilroy’s on Kirkwood’s reviews on Facebook plummeted before the accounts were locked. At the time of this broadcast, Kilroy’s Recess’ Twitter account was set to private.
Kilroy’s Recess marketing director Nicole Freeman posted an apology on the business’s Facebook page: “We unequivocally apologize for last night’s tweet. We recognized immediately that our joke was made in bad taste and quickly deleted it from our account.
“We take the safety of our customers very seriously and work extremely hard to provide a conducive environment to do so. We have worked with Culture of Care, our employees, and the authorities to create and maintain a safe and positive environment for our patrons and we will continue to do so moving forward.”
During last Monday’s solar eclipse, Kilroy’s on Kirkwood advertised with a chalkboard sign that read, “The sun is blacking out, so should you.”
Facebook users pointed out that although Kilroy’s issued a public apology its account still carried “like” posts from followers as well as comments that stated any criticism of the franchise was an “over reaction.”
Following the twitter messages from Kilroy’s Recess, Function Brewing, a vendor for the bar, formally announced via Twitter that they would not sell any more product to the Kilroy’s franchises.
Kilroy’s posts have drawn the ire of the Monroe County chapter of the National Organization for Women, whose Facebook account posited questions to Kilroy’s in response to their apology: “Are you open to dialogue around improving employee training, especially for your social media team, regarding perpetuating Rape Culture and binge drinking? And is the person responsible for the tweets still on your staff?”
No Indiana University spokesperson returned WFHB’s calls for comments in time for this broadcast.
Kilroy’s runs three locations in downtown Bloomington and one in Indianapolis. One of its Bloomington locations was frequented by presumed-dead IU student Lauren Spierer, who disappeared after a night at Kilroy’s Sports in June, 2011.