Spring Lounge Shutting Down: 'The End Of An Era'
This old-Florida watering hole will serve its final round of drinks this weekend.
Spring Lounge, 5722 14th St. W., will close its doors for the last time in the wee hours of Monday morning.
Its last official day is Sunday. But the night you don’t want to miss if you’re a regular, employee, former employee or just someone looking for a good time is Saturday evening. By all accounts, this is going to be one of the grandest evenings in the bar’s long history dating back more than four decades.
“We’re going to have all our employees here, former employees and people who haven’t been here in years are planning to stop by,” said longtime bartender Marcy Haley. “It’s going to be a huge blow out.”
Hours are the same as always: Open at 9 a.m. and close at 2 a.m. Everyone out by 2:30 a.m.
There won’t be a cover nor will the bar spike the cost of a drink for its final Saturday. Same, affordable prices. The alcohol stock – still top notch in the beer department as of last weekend with Guinness, Dos Equis, Sam Adams, Icehouse, Heineken, Beck’s, Aspen Edge and Smirnoff Ice available – is still one of the better ones in town for an old-Florida locale such as this.
Haley said the bar has finally succumbed to the ailing economy after struggling for its last several years. She said some patrons remain hopeful a new investor might swoop in and save the joint but “it just doesn’t work that way,” she said.
Haley has worked at Spring Lounge for 19 years and said she has enough stories to write a book. Not only the stories, but the personal connections, she said. She met her husband there, they divorced, but she still works for him. She pointed to a dent in the bar top, recalling how it got there. She said the bar rarely took a day off; she remembered two in her 19 years.
Sandy McKee’s eyes welled up as she reminisced about her times visiting Spring Lounge, She and her husband have been regulars since before it moved to its current location 20 years ago. She said the Spring Lounge employees and patrons she’s bonded with over the years are like family.
“It’s the end of a wonderful era,” she said. “All of our good friends are going one way or the other way. They’re like our family, and it’s hard to give up your family.”
AROUND BRADENTON THIS WEEKEND:
- Happy hour is 4-7 p.m. Monday through Friday at Boiler Room Bar & Grill, 5600 Manatee Ave. W., with $1 drafts, $1.75 bottles and $5.50 pitchers. Ask about the daily food specials.
- Guitarist and folk singer J.J. Smith is at Rasher Tierney’s Irish Pub & Restaurant, 5106 14th St. W., from 6-9 p.m. Thursday. The Scottish-born singer and local favorite is known for playing old Irish folk songs and getting the crowd engaged with the music.
- Cork’s Cigar Bar, 424 Old Main St., presents “Three on Fire!” a blues music special from 8:30-11:30 p.m. Friday featuring Rebecca the SongBird on lead vocals, Steve Arvey on guitar and vocals and percussionist Cosmo Dallenbach.
- Jonny Congas live Saturday night from 8 p.m. until midnight at Last Call Tavern, 2604 Manatee Ave. E.
- Michael Allman and Friends live at 5 p.m. Sunday at Ace’s Lounge, 4343 Palma Sola Blvd.