20 Years of ATC! Join the celebration.

Twenty years—can you believe it? Two decades ago, the American Tobacco Campus began with the revival of the old tobacco warehouses that stood vacant in downtown Durham for many years.  From neglected buildings to bustling offices, restaurants, and public spaces, the transformation of ATC is a testament to the power of community. None of this would have been possible without the people who bring ATC to life every day–visitors, workers, and residents. 

Reflecting on the past 20 years, we think of the first Tower Lighting that started a Durham tradition, the six times the Durham Bulls clinched the national championship right here at DBAP, the birth of American Underground and many startups to follow, the concerts on the lawn that brought us together–and that time we turned The Cage into a skating rink. These moments are what makes ATC so special.

ATC’s story is one of shared vision and a love for Durham. We’re excited to celebrate this history and we want to hear from you! Share your favorite ATC memory with us, whether it’s a special connection, an exciting event, or a personal accomplishment. Click here to tell your story and let us feature your memories throughout our 20th-anniversary celebration.

We’ve accomplished so much together, and the best is yet to come! Join us in celebrating the American Tobacco Campus–cheers to 20 more years.

MilkShake Factory Shakes Things Up with First North Carolina Location

More Sweet News for Durham and the American Tobacco Campus.

MilkShake Factory is delighted to announce its newest store at the American Tobacco Campus in Durham, marking its first venture into North Carolina. Originating in Pittsburgh, MilkShake Factory has established itself as the go-to neighborhood dessert destination, renowned for its housemade ice cream, handspun milkshakes, and premium chocolates.

Founded by fourth-generation chocolatiers, MilkShake Factory boasts a rich history dating back to 1914. Their dedication to quality is highlighted in their signature milkshake menu featuring Chocolate Dipped Strawberry, Campfire S’mores, and Bananas Foster, alongside MilkShake Factory’s housemade chocolate barks including Cookie, S’mores, or Peanut Butter Toffee.

In 2023, MilkShake Factory announced its expansion through franchising, attracting enthusiastic entrepreneurs like Alex Chandler and Kindall Palmer, residents of Raleigh and now proud franchise owners. “We knew immediately that Downtown Durham would be the perfect
location for the first store in North Carolina,” say Chandler and Palmer. “Durham’s vibrant atmosphere and reputation for unique food concepts make it an ideal fit for MilkShake Factory. The American Tobacco Campus, with its bustling activity, is the perfect setting for our delicious
milkshakes to become a staple sweet treat for locals and visitors alike.”

MilkShake Factory promises to be the go-to spot for milkshake enthusiasts and dessert aficionados alike, offering a classic and cozy atmosphere complemented by friendly staff. Whether patrons are celebrating a special occasion, catching up with loved ones, or simply treating themselves to a sweet indulgence, MilkShake Factory ensures each visit is both memorable and delicious.

“We’re thrilled to welcome MilkShake Factory to the American Tobacco Campus–and Durham, North Carolina,” Mark Stanford, Vice President of Real Estate at CBC Real Estate remarked. ‘This community loves sweet treats and we look forward to seeing the joy and connections their
space will bring.’

Details regarding the Grand Opening of the store at 359 Blackwell St, Suite #120 will be announced soon, with plans to welcome customers this summer. Stay updated on the latest developments by visiting www.milkshakefactory.com, following MilkShake Factory on social media or emailing the team at downtowndurham@milkshakefactory.com.

Get ready, Durham, because life is about to get a lot sweeter.

A New Era of Entertainment at ATC–State of Golf

Downtown Durham’s First Multisport Simulator Bar to Open in May 2024

The American Tobacco Campus is thrilled to welcome State of Golf, an innovative multisport simulator bar, coming to downtown Durham in May 2024. This state-of-the-art venue integrates Full Swing Golf’s advanced technology, offering an immersive experience that allows guests to play virtual golf on the world’s most prestigious courses, as well as enjoy 30 other dynamic sports simulations, including baseball and soccer. State of Golf caters to a diverse audience, offering friends, families, teams, and companies a unique setting for bonding, informal meetings, and celebrations. Situated in close proximity to the Durham Bulls Athletic Park on Blackwell Street, State of Golf aims to be the go-to destination for game day gatherings.

Beyond sports, the venue will include a full-service bar with an extensive selection of beers, a carefully curated wine menu, and craft cocktails inspired by the iconic 19th hole. Though no food will be served on-site, guests are welcome to bring outside food, and plans are in place to partner with local food vendors, ensuring that everyone can enjoy their favorite meals and snacks while playing.

“We’re eager to bring this distinctive entertainment experience to the heart of Durham, offering a new venue for the community to gather, celebrate, and create unforgettable memories,” said Brandon Baker, owner of State of Golf. “Whether it’s sinking that winning putt, hitting a home run in baseball or scoring a goal in soccer, State of Golf is designed to appeal to sports enthusiasts of all ages and abilities.”

Mark Stanford, Vice President of Real Estate at CBC Real Estate, expressed enthusiasm for the latest addition to the American Tobacco Campus, noting, “State of Golf aligns perfectly with our commitment to combining our historic property with forward-thinking entertainment. This concept blends cutting-edge technology with the timeless appeal of sports and leisure and will be another great reason to visit the American Tobacco Campus.”

For further information and updates on the opening of State of Golf, visit www.stateofgolfnc.com.

American Tobacco Campus: In the Spirit of 2023

The American Tobacco Campus experienced a year of growth and reconnection in 2023, with a few unexpected surprises. We were visited by a beaver nicknamed ‘Barry.’ We made an appearance on Saturday Night Live with Burt’s Bees. And, we found ourselves in the New York Times’ latest feature on Durham.

You’ll find all the highlights here in our Annual Report.

On the culinary front, the additions of Five Star, Ekhaya, Seraphine, and The Waiting Room brought new flavors to campus and took dinner and drinks to another level. Meanwhile, PRESS, Parker & Otis, Boricua Soul, and Ekhaya made ATC a brunch hotspot. New businesses brought more workers to campus with BlueMatrix expanding in the Power Plant, and the Chamber Orchestra of Durham moving to the Washington Building. The campus vibrated with energy from Cristo Rey, DurhamTech students, and the opening of Kate’s Korner, ATC’s first childcare center.

The YMCA took the lead on campus wellness, offering free classes and organizing community events like the Volunteer Challenge and Wiffle Ball Tournament. Social and cultural events brought us together: Beats N Bars Festival, Duke Arts music series, Durham Night Market, and CoCo Drip Market, to name a few. Fans came out in droves from Durham Bulls games and DPAC performances, plus Bull City Race Fest and the inspiring BARRIER BREAKERS history exhibit. The Fourth of July Celebration at DBAP drew our biggest crowd yet and the 19th Annual Tower Lighting was a close second.

2023, what a year! And there are more good times ahead as the American Tobacco Campus celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2024. Stay tuned for all things #ATC20Years, and thank you for being a part of our story.

Read our annual report here.

Maker of Durham’s award-winning Honeygirl Mead, will open tasting room in early 2024

The American Tobacco Campus today announced that Ment Beverage Co., the celebrated creator of Honeygirl Mead, will expand its presence with a new location at the American Tobacco Campus in 2024.

Ment Beverage Co. is gearing up to unveil Honeygirl Meadery at 312 Blackwell St. Construction is underway for the new 3,000 square foot tasting room and production across from the Durham Performing Arts Center. Once in the new location, Ment Beverage Co. will expand its product offerings to include mead, cider, locally brewed beer, distilled spirits and nonalcoholic sparkling beverages. Customers will be able to enjoy beverages on site and to stroll around the grounds as part of the Bullpen social district. Ment will also have products available for takeaway.

The new space, designed by architect Dan Huffman of Huffman Architecture and David Sears and Mark Valand of IS Design, will feature two bars, comfortable indoor seating and outdoor patio space. Robert Hoyt, vice president at York Properties, represented Ment Beverage in the negotiation of the lease.

“We are thrilled to welcome Ment Beverage Co. and Honeygirl Meadery to ATC. They are an incredible, local company with a top-notch product.,” said Adam Klein, Director of the American Tobacco Campus. “We are committed to showcasing the best of Durham. There’s a spirit and energy to this brand that we really appreciate and that our campus community is going to love”

Ment Beverage Co. owner Robert Battle said moving the campus was an easy choice given the incredible support and community that already existed. “We can’t wait to be part of this space and introduce more people to our products, made right here and sourced from North Carolina ingredients. Our goal is to continue the high-quality Honeygirl mead and offer new, exciting beverage options for our current and future customers.”

To get a taste of Honeygirl mead, visit the Ment Beverage Co. pop-up at the Tower Lighting Ceremony from 6 pm to 8 pm on November 29, 2023.

More information HERE.

Louisiana-inspired kitchen and bar

Now Open!

Seraphine is a Louisiana-inspired kitchen and bar, offering an updated interpretation of traditional classic dishes and cocktails in a lively and elegant atmosphere. ATC’s second restaurant by Brad and Graham Weddington of NanaSteak, Seraphine is an instant hot spot for outdoor dining with patio seating and its own water fountain. Reserve a table or walk right in for cajun staples like gumbo, shrimp and grits, beignets and a top notch bar program. 

Seraphine is located at 324 Blackwell Street Suite 402 in the Washington Building, Bay 4. Directly adjacent to the South Parking Deck, next door to Parker & Otis. 

For menu and reservations, click HERE.

ATC and Crayons2Calculators Fill that Bus!

American Tobacco Campus (ATC) and Crayons2Calculators came together in support of Durham Public Schools with The Fill that Bus! Supply Drive. 

This drive is about more than school supplies–it’s about giving our teachers the materials they need to succeed in the 2023-2024 school year. Durham Public School teachers play a very important role in our growing city, shaping young minds and creating brighter futures. 

ATC rallied to Fill that Bus! collecting two full boxes of supplies and raising over $2500 online, with Pallet Alliance and Johnson Groninger leading the charge. Small acts can make a big difference. Thank you to everyone who contributed. 

We are proud of our community’s support for Durham Public Schools, and grateful to Crayons2Calculators for their leadership. Together, we’re making Durham into a better place to learn, work, and live – a place where every student has a chance to shine.

Campus Volunteer Challenge–the results are in!

AMERICAN TOBACCO and the YMCA partnered for the first-ever Campus Volunteer Challenge. In just four weeks, volunteers from various campus companies dedicated a remarkable 185.5 hours of their time to benefit 15 local nonprofits.

The Challenge brought together Clorox, ATC Management, Beghou Consulting, CMG Consulting, CEP Compression, McKinney, Three Oaks, and YMCA in a friendly competition. They worked towards supporting nonprofits that serve our local community, including Durham Rescue Mission, Note in the Pocket, Interfaith Food Shuttle, Eno River Association, NCFC Youth, Food Bank of Central & Eastern NC, Alston Ridge Elementary School, Dress for Success, Urban Ministries, Pauli Murray Center, Diaper Bank, Porch – Durham, Miracle League of the Triangle, and Fresh Start Durham.

We are proud to recognize Clorox as the winner of our inaugural Campus Volunteer Challenge. Clorox led the way with the highest overall volunteer hours and engagement per employee. We applaud their commitment to community service, and appreciate the high standard Clorox sets for our next competition.

Thanks to the incredible generosity and enthusiasm of the campus community and The YMCA, the Campus Volunteer Challenge will become an annual event. Next year, it will run for two months. Through collective action and the power of giving, we are making Durham an even better place to live, work, and play.

Now Open! Ekhaya

Zweli’s Ekhaya is now open! From the celebrated Triangle chef Zweli Williams, Ekhaya which means “home” in Zulu or Ndebele, brings bold Bantu Fusion tapas to the American Tobacco Campus. This eagerly-awaited elevated dining experience serves up the bold flavors of South Africa in a warm atmosphere. Make your reservation, make yourself at home.

Building Location: Crowe Lobby/The Patio

Address: 406 Blackwell Street, Suite 100, Durham, NC 27701

For menu and reservations, click HERE

Now Open! The Waiting Room

The wait is over. The buzzy new destination craft cocktail bar is open in the American Tobacco Campus at 300 Blackwell St…Owners and operators, Nick Singh and Buddy Maynard dreamed up The Waiting Room as a go to spot to hang out while waiting for a table at any one of downtown Durham’s hot local restaurants.

The community spirit of The Waiting Room shines through, as they welcome you for any part of night out, a nod to all the wait-worthy local businesses in Durham

Located in downtown Durham’s oldest commercial building, guests will be welcomed by brick walls, a hand-built bar and cozy, bright nooks to drink, nosh and conversate. The Waiting Room is all classic vibes modernized in a warm, inclusive space.

And then, of course, there are the cocktails. Did we bury the lead? The Waiting Room aims to flip the script on pairing drinks with food, instead crafting a thoughtful menu of small plates to pair with their expansive, expressive and impressive cocktail offerings. Featuring nearly 200 selections of liquor, including those from local distillers, their cocktail menu features signature and classic drinks –an Old Bull or an Old Fashioned– and knowledgeable and attentive bartenders who will help you find just the right sip for your mood. Alcohol free? The Waiting Room also features a focused and delicious selection of creative NA options.

To compliment your cocktail or tide you over until dinner, The Waiting Room has a thoughtfully curated menu of small plates and desserts to hit the spot. From charcuterie to caviar deviled eggs to sticky date pudding and macarons, you’ll find the perfect bite to start or end your evening.

Whether you are waiting for your show, game or table, or if The Waiting Room is your main event, don’t delay (imagine if we said “wait” again) in finding drinks, food and community at this new American Tobacco Campus destination in the heart of Downtown Durham. 

Building Location: In the Old Bull Building at the corner of Pettigrew and Blackwell Street

Address: 300 Blackwell Street, Suite 100, Durham, NC 27701