A new business is going into the Stadium Sports Bar space at 620 W. Maple, and the owner has a history with the building.
Tina McDonald, who has bartended and managed off and on at the various businesses that have come in and out of the space for the past 12 years, plans to open Tina’s Tavern there in a few weeks.
McDonald said she first worked in the building, which sits in the shadow of Lawrence-Dumont Stadium, when her uncle owned it more than a decade ago. She also worked for the previous owner, Lori Fry, who closed the Stadium in November after nine years in business.
For the past few years, McDonald has worked at the P&C Club, a tiny bar at 728 E. Pawnee known for its Friday-night home cooking feasts. But when she heard that the Stadium building was available, she started thinking about all the regular customers she’d gotten to know there over the years.
“These people had been coming here for 30 years,” she said. “They’re lost.”
McDonald is remodeling the bar now. She’s ripped out the old flooring, has plans to increase the size of the stage and will expand into the west side of the building, which the previous owners used for storage. She’ll likely move the pool tables there, she said.
She’ll start off serving cold sandwiches but eventually plans to offer bar food, she said.
McDonald said she’ll likely be open 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily. I’ll update you when she settles on an opening date.