FAMILY AFFAIR

Error message

  • Warning: array_merge(): Argument #1 is not an array in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 133 of /home/pdccourier/public_html/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Notice: Trying to get property of non-object in _simpleads_adgroup_settings() (line 343 of /home/pdccourier/public_html/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).
  • Warning: array_merge(): Argument #1 is not an array in _simpleads_render_ajax_template() (line 157 of /home/pdccourier/public_html/sites/all/modules/simpleads/includes/simpleads.helper.inc).

 

By Pat McTaggart

Freelance Writer

 

The day-to-day operation of Drew’s Sports Bar & Grille is definitely a family affair.  Owner Andrew “Drew” Armstrong, his wife, Kara, sister, Chelsea, and mother, Annie, all work at the popular bar and restaurant, located at 203 South Main Street in Elkader.

Drew’s grandparents owned a bar in Elkport several decades ago,” Annie said.  “He talked about owning a bar in high school and even wrote a paper about it.”

His chance came when “The Hot Spot,” a bar owned by Randy and Sherry Henning, went up for sale.  He originally asked Annie to buy the business, saying he would tend bar.  “I told him that I was too old to stay up that late every night,” Annie said.  “So I told him that if he would buy the bar I would work for him.”

“I thought ‘What the heck, I’ll go for it,’” Drew commented.

Since Drew was only 20 at the time, Annie had to apply for the liquor license.  “He could serve the beer, but he couldn’t get the license,” she said.

Drew’s opened on July 21, 2006.  Since the bar also served food, Annie taught him to cook in the fast-food kitchen.  Kara also bartended, while Chelsea worked as a waitress.

The family remained at the first location at 108 West Bridge Street for about 2½ years. After the 2008 flood, Drew bought the building at his current location.

Originally a garage and automobile showroom, the building was constructed in 1948 and was known as the Cheeseman building. Louise McTaggart purchased the building in the 1950s, and the largest room in the building became McTaggart & Sons Furniture main furniture show floor. After McTaggart’s closed, the building became home to the Elkader Wellness Center until it sustained damage in the 2008 flood.

With the move to the new location, Drew’s Bar became Drew’s Sports Bar & Grille. In addition to  the large interior room, the Armstrongs built a front bar that opened on St. Patrick’s Day in 2011.

Drew employs two bartenders besides the Armstrongs, but Kara, Chelsea, Drew and Annie all take turns in doing both cooking and tending bar.  Drew’s brother, Bill, also lends a hand in the kitchen during busy periods.

A menu of appetizers, sandwiches, wraps and sides gives patrons a wide range to choose from.  Specials include all you can eat wings on Mondays, Tacos on Tuesdays and all you can eat fish on Fridays during the fall and winter months.  Drew said he is planning to start a rib special on Saturdays starting in April.

There are televisions in both the front bar and the rear bar, so patrons can always enjoy their favorite sports events.  Drew also sponsors dart and pool teams and has a DJ for birthdays or special events.

Kara and Chelsea’s children are also present for some of the day.  “”It made it easy to have the kids in here after the no smoking law was passed,” Kara said.  “The regulars are pretty good to our kids.”

Working as a family can sometimes create problems.  “It can get a little stressful sometimes when family spats occur,” Annie said.  “It’s kind of difficult sometimes, but we manage,” Chelsea added.

All of the Armstrongs agree that they really enjoy their patrons.  Drew said that he plans to stay in the business for a long time to come.  Kara echoed his sentiments.  “We have already told the kids that they will be working here when they get older,” she said.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet