Lakeview Lounge

Tip's for Band

We just got back from a sad event — the last night of the Lakeview Lounge. The Lakeview Lounge was my favorite dive bar, a dark long room in Uptown (“there ain’t no lake and there ain’t no view,” Joe would say) lit mainly by strings of holiday lights. The distinguishing quality (other than its proximity to my old house) of the Lakeview Lounge was Nightwatch, the three-man band who played Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights, and had been doing so for 18 years. The place was so small that Nightwatch were on a small platform behind the bar, and when drunk ladies wanted to dance with the band they had to come behind the bar to do so.

Evidently, the Lakeview has fallen victim to the same-old-same-old — rising rents (and no public outcry to save them). Despite rumors of a new location down on Lawrence, the bartender tonight told me that there was no plans to move anywhere. My roommate had heard it was going to be a big party tonight, but it was pretty quiet when I was there*. Maybe most people were feeling like I was — I stayed for an hour and had a free drink and took a bunch of pictures, but eventually I had to leave because I was getting too sad. I loved that place — the wood paneling, and the handwritten signs, and Nightwatch’s Johnny Cash covers (and the way they’d never finish a Hendrix song), and the old lady bartenders, and the Syrian food on Joe’s birthday every year. Oh, and the dart board — I played the best game of darts in my life on that dart board.

Damn, I’m getting all misty-eyed again.

7 Comments so far

  1. tankboy (unregistered) on August 15th, 2005 @ 11:26 am


  2. Moon (unregistered) on August 15th, 2005 @ 1:00 pm

    Dive bars are over-rated.

    /And yes, I have been in the Lakeview Lounge.

  3. Moon (unregistered) on August 15th, 2005 @ 1:05 pm

    Wow. Looking at the pictures, I haven’t been in the Lakeview Lounge for a while. That bass player didn’t have grey hair.

  4. Fuzzy (unregistered) on August 15th, 2005 @ 1:12 pm

    Dive bars are not for everyone. Hell, dive bars are often not for me. A synonym for “dive bar” is often “crappy bar” — why would anyone want to hang out in a dirty, broke-down place with surly bartenders? (Cathy, the owner of the Lakeview, could be down-right *mean*.)

    But a dive bar and it’s inhabitants are often the embodiment of the history of a neighborhood, and that’s fascinating to me. And if it really is your local bar, a dive bar can be a very comfortable place — the Lakeview Lounge was for me.

  5. Justin (unregistered) on August 15th, 2005 @ 2:00 pm

    I gotta pay attention. I can’t believe the Lakeview went away. My friend Adam got pistol-whipped in the Lakeview. Was Peaches still there? The bartender who was missing a pinky?

  6. Joel (unregistered) on September 13th, 2005 @ 7:18 pm

    I had my 28th birthday party there.
    I’m glad I spent my first couple hours there partying.

    I’m going to miss the Saturday nights at that place.

    I raise a Heinaken and a shot of Wild Turkey to you all.
    Much love.

    P.S. Pictures of my birthday are in my photogallery.

  7. Dave (unregistered) on October 25th, 2005 @ 12:32 am

    Anybody heard about a new Lakeview opening or if Nightwatch is playing anywhere? I really miss that bar.

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