Monday, July 12, 2010

The Bierstube: Get Your Free Ring Here!

Tom C.'s picture skiing in a Superman outfit on the wall behind the bar.  Backdoor burgers.  Padded headrests over the urinals.  The House Band.  Gary Elliott, the proprietor.  The plastic tarantula on a fishing line that would drop out of nowhere down to eye level over by the fireplace after you'd been sitting there for an hour and the beer had let your guard down.  T-shirts hanging from the rafters (one referring to the Iran hostage crisis read "Canada 6, Iran 0").  The Free Bierstube Ring, whereby any ski bunny could walk up to the bar, ask for a free ring, get carefully measured for finger size by the bartender - and then turn beet-red when he reached for a rope and loudly rang the Bierstube bell.  The 'Stube is still there, not yet a victim of condo-mization (sp?).  Is it too raucous for the genteel neighborhood that has developed around it, or is the land it sits upon becoming too valuable?  The sad reality is that ski resorts discovered in the '90s that the real secret to making money is property development, not selling lift passes.  (I know, at $79/day you'd think they could make money, but that mostly goes to liability insurance these days!)  The 'Stube deserves National Historic Site status - at least in my opinion.