Oldest continuous operating bar in Huntington celebrates its 100th Anniversary
(Huntington, NY) Finnegan’s Restaurant & Tap Room (5 Wall Street, Huntington, NY (631) 423-9696), a local landmark since 1912 and the oldest continuous operating bar in Huntington, celebrates its 100th Anniversary this July. Now owned and operated by Lessing’s Hospitality Group (www.lessings.com), Finnegan’s continues its long tradition as the ‘Cheers’ of Huntington where friends go to enjoy good food, good cheer and good people.
The centennial festivities kick off on Friday, July 27 with the Bartenders Reunion. More than two dozen Finnegan’s bartenders, some of whom will be flying cross-country for the special event and date back to the 1960s, will return to their previous haunt. Memories will be re-lived as they serve their favorite drink creations from behind the mahogany bar and reunite with old friends. For those who wish to go back in time to Finnegan’s speakeasy days during Prohibition, they may want to order a legendary whiskey sour.
LANDMARK MURAL GETS A TOUCHUP
Finnegan’s 34-year-old mural will also be dedicated on Friday, weather permitting. The unveiling will take place on Friday, July 20 at 7 p.m. Painted by local artist and Huntington native Phillip Charles Jordan, it is located on the outside wall of the building on Finnegan’s Way. In celebration of the 100th year, Finnegan’s invited Jordan to return and restore the faded mural to its former glory. (In an effort to document all the faces on the wall, Finnegan’s would like those who know anyone in the mural to call Tom Forte at 631-423-9696.)
Jordan originally proposed the idea of painting a mural to gain recognition as an artist in the Huntington area and completed the six-month project in December 1978. The 55’ x 15’ mural, which was the first of many for Jordan, portrays an x-ray view inside Finnegan’s with 140 portraits (originally taken with a Polaroid) of regular customers as they would always be seen at the bar. The concept was to feature all the regulars and employees in a caricature fashion. Today, according to Jordan, it has become “a memorial” and “a fabric of the town.”
STREET-WIDE ANNIVERSARY BASH
The Main Event will take place from 6 to 10 p.m. on Saturday, July 28. Wall Street will be closed from Gerard Street to Main Street in Huntington Village for a street-wide celebration. Admission is free.
Tom Forte, the veteran face of Finnegan’s and the bartender/manager for the last 22 years, will make a special introduction and thanks. Performances by the U.S. Marine Corps Guard, Thimble Theatre bagpipers, Irish band, and local dancers from Dancin’ Feet Studios and singers will follow.
Finnegan’s 100th food specials include: Guinness sausages, ¼ lb. cheeseburger, hot corned beef sandwich on Rye, and chili with cheddar for $5 each; two for $5 Sabrett hot dogs; and ice cream. Lemonade, iced tea, and water will be served for $3 each. Jameson and Guinness specials will be served in 16-ounce commemorative 100th Anniversary Stadium cups, for guests to take home, for $5.
Custom Finnegan’s 100th shirts will also be available. T-shirts cost $12 for child sizes and $15 for adult sizes. Fairway & Greene golf shirt with the embroidered 100-year logo costs $60.
Guests will receive free coozies and Jameson Girls will be on-hand with Jameson giveaways. Giveaways include New York Yankee tickets, a Jameson Snowboard, bicycle, and flat screen TV (worth $400-500).
Giveaways, in addition to food and drink specials (to be determined), will be offered throughout the week until Thursday, August 2. Finnegan’s 100th Summer Specials, also offered that week, include: Sunday – Picnic Basket $14.25, Monday – Soft Shell Crab $15.95, Tuesday – Yankee Pot Roast $14.50, Wednesday – Corn Beef & Cabbage $13.50, Thursday – Chef’s Pasta $14.95, Friday – Mussels Pot with Fries $14.95, and Saturday – Jack Daniels Honey BBQ Ribs $15.95.
Finnegan’s Restaurant & Tap Room offers traditional pub fare, genuine charm, friendly service and good cheer that has remained unchanged since it was founded in 1912, pre-Prohibition era. It is home to the famous 34-year-old mural that depicts the most important aspect of Finnegan’s character – its customers – with more than 100 regulars included. Previously occupied by the famous Huntington House, built in 1816, Finnegan’s remains a part of Huntington’s history and character from the 100-year-old mirror behind the bar to the antique clock that the original founder, Andrew Finnegan, set to 11 o’clock in honor of the end of World War I in 1918 (the hand has not budged since). Finnegan was once cited in Ripley’s “Believe It or Not” as “The good bartender of Huntington, New York – 45 years a bartender and never tasted liquor or smoked tobacco.” This citation and many more line the walls providing a truly unique décor depicting history.
ABOUT LESSING’S HOSPITALITY
A sixth generation, family owned-and-operated business founded in 1890, Lessing’s is one of the most recognizable names in food, service and catering on Long Island. The company began with the goal of providing services to coffee shops in lower Manhattan and has grown to be one of the Northeast region’s leading providers of food and beverage services. With three divisions – foodservice management, restaurants and catering – Lessing’s operates more than 120 locations including eight full-service restaurants, one hotel, 12 catering venues, and provides off-premise services for countless weddings and special events. www.lessings.com
For further information, contact Finnegan’s Restaurant & Tap Room at (631) 423-9696 or visit. “Like us” on Facebook at www.facebook.com/FinnegansNY. For media inquires, contact WordHampton Public Relations at (631) 329-0050.