Celebrated Irish pub in Savannah set to close at year’s end

December 24, 2019 GMT

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — One of Savannah’s most celebrated Irish pubs plans to close it doors after ringing in the new year.

Kevin Barry’s Pub has been a popular spot for sipping Guinness and listening to live Irish folk music since 1980. News outlets report the pub on Savannah’s cobblestone riverfront will close out its New Year’s celebration with a final last call.

The pub’s owner, Vic Power, decided to retire when the his lease for the business expires after Dec. 31, a spokesman, Frank Emerson, said in a post on Facebook.

Named for an Irish freedom fighter, Kevin Barry’s for decades has occupied a 19th century building overlooking the Savannah River.

HOS Management, a management company tied to the building’s owner, declined to comment about future plans for the space, WTOC-TV reported.

Power’s celebration of Irish tradition wasn’t something trotted out once a year for Savannah’s famed St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Folk singers performed Irish music at the pub year round, and shepherd’s pie was always on the menu. The pub never installed TVs or Wi-Fi for customers’ phones.

And on St. Patrick’s Day, a manager once said, the rule at Kevin Barry’s was “no leprechauns, no rainbows.”

The dedication to Irish roots got noticed far beyond Savannah.

In 2016, the Irish Pubs Global Federation named Kevin Barry’s the world’s “Most Authentic Irish Pub” outside of Ireland.