Sad news: Boulevard Tavern will be pulling its final pint this weekend, after 10 years of serving the neighborhood.
Owner Harold Kramer and his wife Ria started running the bar in 2005. They reclaimed the name ‘Boulevard Tavern’ after discovering the signage underneath that of J&D’s, the bar that closed on the same site in the early 2000s.
Tragically, Ria lost her battle with cancer three years ago, and Harold has been struggling to manage the bar alone. Among the reasons he cites for closing, he says “it’s tough being a small business in NYC right now”.
Here is an excerpt of a note that Harold recently posted on the bar’s Facebook page.
“It is with great sadness that I must report that after 10 years my beloved bar Boulevard Tavern will close its doors for the last time on Aug 30th 2015.
I could cite many reasons for this, but suffice to say, a changing demographic in the neighborhood, increased competition, and increased costs are about as good a reason as any. Let’s just say its tough being a small business in NYC right now. I tried, really tried to keep the bar open. So much so that it has caused me to go into massive debt.
The past four years have been extremely difficult. Starting with Ria’s battle with cancer and her untimely death, things were just never the same. After Ria’s death the business started to go downhill. I noticed the drop off right away. Just about that time we saw new places open up in the neighborhood. I was sure these places were taking a bite out of Boulevard’s business but without Ria there was something missing that could not be replaced.
I kept the place going for last 3 years but it was always a struggle. Dwindling sales made it very difficult to balance the finances but I managed as well I could.
Over the years Boulevard Tavern has become a special place for a lot of people. There are a lot of memories here that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
I just want to thank all those friends who have supported us over the years. We couldn’t have done it without you.”
The final farewell party is this Saturday 29th August . Be sure to pop by for a pint and give Boulevard Tavern the send-off it deserves.
Boulevard Tavern is at 579 Meeker Avenue (b/w Monitor Street and North Henry Street).