Highlighting unique eats in Nebraska

August 4, 2018 GMT

Community members can soon see the familiar faces of Glur’s Tavern on television as the local spot will be featured on the television show “Eat Across Nebraska” when it premieres Aug. 19 on NET, Nebraska’s PBS and NPR stations.

“There’s a story that needs to be told there,” said Dave Dwinell, who produced the show with Brandee Weber of NET Communications.

Dwinell said the stories behind a restaurant are just as important as its food. “Eat Across Nebraska” explores the different restaurants within the state, from as far west as McCook to Lincoln and Columbus, focusing on their histories and food.

Dwinell and Weber began their tour around the state earlier this year, visiting restaurants like Glur’s Tavern, Mac’s Drive-In in McCook, Ole’s Big Game Steakhouse & Lounge in Paxton, Emporium in Scottsbluff, Big Mama’s Kitchen in Omaha, Round the Bend in South Bend, Blue Sushi Sake Grill in Omaha and Lincoln, as well as The Over in Lincoln and The Flippin Sweet in Kearney.

“There’s a little bit of everything across the state,” Dwinell said, noting filming took place earlier this year. “When I started reading about Glur’s Tavern, I thought I have to do this.”

Todd Trofholz, owner of Glur’s Tavern, 2301 11th St. in Columbus, said the restaurant has been featured in numerous news articles, magazines, books and television shows that have highlighted its history since 1876. He added he’s happy to help showcase his business to anyone who’s interested.

Trofholz took over the business on Aug. 3, 1992. Since then, he has been running the business with his wife, Carrie. He said the restaurant has already established its reputation as one of the oldest taverns in Nebraska, attracting tourists from different parts of the country.

Trofholz said he remembered two customers from California who flew into Nebraska just to visit the restaurant, noting they were touring the nation visiting historical taverns.

“That was the only reason they came to Nebraska, was to stop by at one of the oldest taverns,” he said.

The tavern is known for its history with William Frederick “Buffalo Bill” Cody, who was the former leader of the Pawnee Indian Scouts, a bison hunter and showman. He visited Glur’s Tavern in May 1883 with a $1,000 bill after attending the funeral for Major Frank North, who was an American interpreter, U.S. Army officer and politician.

Dwinell said he remembered how amazed he was with the tavern’s history, which could clearly be seen throughout the restaurant, including its walls.

“It was great to meet these people that make these restaurants happen,” he said.

Despite Glur’s Tavern already being a prominent tourist spot in the area, Trofholz said the extra publicity can help draw more traffic into the restaurant and Columbus, especially patrons traveling in from Lincoln and Omaha.

“One of the neatest things is to meet people,” he said. “Everyone that steps in has a story.”

Dwinell, who currently resides in Lincoln, said people who reside in bigger cities don’t usually make the trip to smaller towns or don’t have the opportunity to do so. So he hopes the show can help provide that extra push by showcasing what these different restaurants and communities have to offer.

“I really love the show the way it is,” he said. “I am thrilled that it turned out well.”

“Eat Across Nebraska” premieres at 11:30 a.m. CST Aug. 19, on NET, Nebraska’s PBS & NPR Stations, with repeats at 11 p.m. on Aug. 19; 8:30 p.m. Aug. 22; 11:30 p.m. on Aug. 24; and 4:30 p.m. Aug. 25.

Natasya Ong is a reporter for The Columbus Telegram. Reach her via email at natasya.ong@lee.net.