Tag: Paonia

Obituary: Good Spirits Bar and Grill

Obituary: Good Spirits Bar and Grill

My first piece for Mountain Gazette, from August 2003: An obituary for — and defense of — a short-lived bar in Paonia that had (re-)opened its doors just as I arrived in town. The building now houses the local community radio station.


Good Spirits Bar and Grill

— Joshua Zaffos

The Deceased: Good Spirits Bar and Grill (a/k/a The Great Escape Pub and Eatery), Paonia CO
Born: August 2002
Died: March 2003
Cause of death: Teetotalitarianism

GoodSpirits sign
Good Spirits Bar, c. 2003

“Any town with more churches than bars, that town’s got a problem. That town is asking for trouble.”
– Edward Abbey, The Monkey Wrench Gang

When I first arrived along the North Fork of the Gunnison River, I remember reading one of the tourist rags promoting the North Fork valley. Amid the popular trail suggestions and bed-and-breakfast listings, the paper also included notes from town meetings for the small communities of Paonia, Crawford and Hotchkiss. That month in Paonia, a proprietor went before the town trustees proposing to re-open a bar along Grand Avenue, the town’s main street.

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