By DAVID FOLSE II
Tammany West news
ABITA SPRINGS — Ask people their first reaction when you say the words tavern or bar, and family-type atmosphere are nowhere to be found.
Rosie’s Tavern in Abita Springs is quickly becoming an exception to the rule.
Growing up in the bar business, owner Ron Edmiston said running his own bar has always been in his blood.
“King’s Bar and Restaurant on Franklin Avenue was my grandfather’s bar,” Edmiston said. “The bar business and everything included in it I guess you can say has been in my DNA. Some of my fondest memories growing up were at that bar. There were some characters at the bar and everybody really just got to know each other. It was a family of its own.”
Starting at the bottom of the bar business by stocking the boxes and helping to clean up at the end of the night, Edmiston worked his way to the top and in 1998 purchased Rosie’s Tavern.
“I was in charge at the end of the night and was responsible for the bar being ready to go the next morning,” he said. “Growing up there was two things I wanted to do. One was to teach and the other was to own a bar. I had a vision of how I wanted my bar to feel, not to look. I wanted people to feel comfortable enough to bring in their parents or even their grandparents and not feel concerned with safety and other things.”
Rather than buying the bar from the old owner’s, Edmiston and his partner actually purchased it from the landlord.
“We just noticed that the old owners really weren’t making that much of an effort in this place,” he said. “You could just see it. I told the owner of the building if there comes a time you are looking for a new owner, I would be very interested. Of course, none of this would have possible without the great support of my wife. That is how it started; he drove in from Houston the next day.
“After about 40 days of renovations and improvements we opened up and here we are.”
Getting rid of the type of crowd standing in his way which had previously inhabited the bar Edmiston said took time, but now Rosie’s Tavern is home to a friendly, family type of establishment he had envisioned.
“People can sit down and have a conversation at a bar, enjoy themselves and not have to look over their shoulders,” he said. “I would say it took about almost two years to get rid of the negative patrons that use to come here. Bringing and maintaining a positive atmosphere is of course an ever constant process.
“We are encouraging people to be a part of our atmosphere, but in a positive way. You can come in here, have a beer, feel safe and meet new people or watch the game on our big screens. It’s a safe, community bar.”
With over 50 different beers on tap, there is free food every Tues.-Thurs. and Sun., a Golden Tee tournament with prizes every Sunday afternoon beginning at 2:00, an 8-ball pool league every Thursday beginning at 7:30 and a dart league every Tuesday at 7:30. Free internet Wi-Fi is also offered.
“I’ll give you a great example,” Edmiston said. “Take this past New Year’s Eve. We had a huge line for people to take part in bowling on the Nintendo Wii. Who would have thought that? That is who we are.
“We aren’t a place that is shoving shots and drinks down your throat. We are a place where you come and meet new people and hopefully make some new friends. That is what we are all about.”
Located at 22067 Hwy. 59 in Abita Springs, Rosie’s Tavern is open seven days a week from 11 am – midnight. You can check them out on facebook at Rosie’s Tavern or they can be reached via phone at 985-809-0454. You must be 21 or older to enter the bar.