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    Eat & Swig

    Get into the Spirit of the Season with Four Haunted Louisville Bars
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    Whenever I go to wet my whistle at my favorite watering hole, I can almost always expect some sort of entertainment, whether that be a great band, lively conversation, or an amusing people-watching experience.  I do not, however, expect to hear about a ghost haunting my local bars.  Although now that All Hallows’ Eve is upon us there’s nothing like a little bit of spook to go along with whatever you’re sippin’ on!  

    Here are some great ghost stories you may not have heard.  Even if you are a skeptic you have to admit, these tales of allegedly haunted bars will help you get into the SPIRIT of things!!!!

    Meat

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    Picture taken by Eron Plevan of the memento Jared left for the ghost he saw at Meat.

    Like every good ghost, Meat never seemed to fully disappear.  On April 2, 2013 Meat announced its “temporary” closing, and since then we have all waited for the pre-prohibition era bar so many of us loved to reappear, with no luck so far.  One of the bartenders at Meat, Eron Plevan, took some time to relate this ghost story to me.  Meat’s space had housed several establishments prior to the bar: apartments, a grocery store, etc.  There were already stories floating around about doors opening and closing on their own, or a presence of some kind felt by other employees. One night, Jared Shubert (the head bartender at Meat, now at the Monkey Wrench) pulled Eron aside and informed him that he had seen a full-body apparition the night before. According to

    Jared, he was closing the bar alone, and looked up to see a woman dressed in 20’s-era clothing, with long hair, standing in between the curtains by the entrance of the bar. As suddenly as she had appeared she was gone.

    Several nights later, Eron was at his station using a stamp to double-verify patrons as they entered the bar.  As it got close to last call ( 3:30-4ish a.m.) Eron decided to check and see if there were any more closing duties he could help with.  When he returned back to his stand the stamp pad had been opened and the entire surface of the stand had been decorated with the stamp.  He did not recall anyone leaving the bar in this time, and he was not gone long enough for someone to pull such a prank.  He isn’t sure if maybe it was someone who was drunk and playing a joke on him, or if it was something else.  Maybe one day Meat will open up again and you can find out for yourself!

    El Camino

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    Before the Mexican Surf n’ Turf restaurant was at 1314 Bardstown Rd, Louisville, KY 40204; the building used to house an upscale restaurant called Avalon.  Long before that it used to be someone’s home.  If you’ve lived in the area, or ever gone on a ghost tour; you have probably heard the location was haunted.  But could it still be haunted after all this time and all of the changes?  Matthew Young, one of the managing partners at El Camino, tells me yes, there is definitely some activity still going on.  Although he hasn’t seen the ghost himself, mostly things are getting knocked off of shelves.  And not precariously placed items, but pots, pans, and even glasses that are all securely sitting on level surfaces.  Young quips: “last I checked, our building is not that crooked”.  

    Young has heard that this pesky spirit is a woman who used to live in the house with her one-eyed dog.  According to rumor, she passed away in the house and still feels that it is very much her home.  To appease this ghost and soften her temper, Matt suggested his staff talk to her.  Apparently, if you tell her what it is you are doing in her house she is sweeter and less likely to send a bag of flour sailing across the room.  So the next time you are sipping on one of El Camino’s concoctions, take a look around and see if you can catch a glimpse of this sassy spirit!

    Meta

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    As I leaned over the cool marble bar top I nonchalantly asked my bartender, Amy, if Meta was haunted.  I did not expect for her answer to be yes.  But the story she wove was one of the more colorful ones, which matches the seedy history of Meta’s location at 425 W Chestnut St Louisville, KY, 40202.  Meta used to be a strip club called Show-n-Tell Lounge. They’ve embraced the location’s past by reusing the former neon sign that hangs out front, and even the stripper poles were repurposed as a kick rail for the bar, and a bike stand out front.   During the construction of Meta, Jeremy Johnson’s sister would comment on how she felt something and that she was uneasy.  After they opened, Jeremy (co-owner of Meta along with Hannah Kandle)

    saw a woman walk through the doorway into the back hallway…and he was the only one there.  So he and Amy looked all around but could not find a trace of this woman he saw.  Finally, one night, a former dancer from the Show-n-Tell came in and shed some light on the spooky issue.  Apparently there was a woman who used to live and work at the club, a house mother of sorts.  One night a customer killed her.  To make this story even more interesting, there is a MASSIVE nude painting of her which Jeremy kept.  They claim she likes to hang out with her painting, which has recently been relocated to the first floor in one of the offices. The details of this story are still fuzzy, so  head down to this bar and order a drink.  Maybe the spirit will appear and tell you the story herself!

    The Silver Dollar

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    The Silver Dollar is already packed with some great history.  Sarah Kelly, the assistant general manager informed me that the building itself is one of the oldest firehouses in the country.  Its original name was Hook and Ladder No. 3, now known as the Albert A. Stoll Firehouse. It was an active firehouse until 2009, so it’s not uncommon for firemen to show up and ask for a tour of their old stomping grounds.  It was during one of these tours when a visiting firefighter announced “I feel him”.  To which Sarah replied “‘Feel who?’  And they started to tell me about Kevin”.  Apparently, when a firefighter dies in a fire their body is brought back to the station they worked at before it is released to the family.  Unfortunately for Kevin he was taken to the wrong firehouse before he was brought back to his Frankfort Ave. location.  Perhaps that is the reason he still hangs around, allegedly playing pranks on the Silver Dollar’s employees.  Sarah says it’s little things, like toilet paper rolls or even bottled beer disappearing and reappearing after they thought it was gone.  And if you really want to have an experience or if you doubt the story, Sarah says go up to a quiet room upstairs and introduce yourself to Kevin.  The feeling you get is incredible and even some of the staff have been bold enough to try it. So head on over to The Silver Dollar, grab a drink, and say hello to Kevin!

    Do you know of any more haunted Louisville bars?  Leave us a message in the comments section!

     

    Photos Courtesy of Eron Plevan and Lauren O’Neil

    Lauren O'Neil's picture

    About Lauren O'Neil

    Champagne, sequins, high heels, and mermaids.

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