Hull Avenue Tavern: the new oldest bar in town4/22/2015
Cradled by the booming arms of Des Moines, Snusville is a homey town where everyone knows everyone. It’s like when you call a friend to tell him or her about your new promotion on the way home from work, and by the time you arrive, people are already celebrating your big news. In times like this, everyone ends up at the same central place: Boggs’ Hull Avenue Tavern.
The Tavern reopened just a few months ago after undergoing some renovations. The makeover included beige walls, improved electrical and plumbing, new flooring, rebuilding the bar into an L-shape, new tables and chairs and two high-definition televisions. One of the coolest additions was the new bar top made of lane 36 from Fairlanes AMF — yes, you read that right: the bar top is a transformed bowling lane.
“When I reimagined the Hull, I saw it as a ’50s, blue collar, neighborhood bar,” said Jason Boggs, the owner and man behind the renovations at Hull Avenue Tavern.
Aside from the much-needed and attractive improvements, the Tavern has kept its “neighborhood bar” character and added even more opportunities for its guests to have a great time. The bar serves up a house rendition of a Tom Collins — called a Snusville Collins — featuring gin, sweet and sour, and orange juice with a soda fill.
“It’s a salute to the era when the Hull Avenue opened its doors; it’s a perfect drink for summer,” explained Boggs.
The Tavern’s house shot is Fireball, which can be purchased for $3. Happy hour includes 50 cents off all calls, wells and bottles, and $1 off pitchers. There is also a new popcorn machine to keep those drinking munchies at bay throughout the night.
Not only does the Tavern bar serve up some great drinks, it also offers exciting entertainment. First, no bar is complete without pool tables, which they have. Second, with some other live music venues closing in the metro, it’s nice to find a new place to enjoy live, local music.
Hull Avenue Tavern books a variety of musical genres — from country to heavy metal — with weekend shows starting at 9 p.m. Bar goers also look forward to the jam sessions. For now, the only session is held on Sundays. It’s called the Sunday Blues Jam (7-11 p.m.) and is run by Tom Gary and features local blues musicians. But Boggs says people should expect a new session to begin on Wednesdays in the coming weeks.
“I believe musical diversity brings in different people who might not have ever come into the bar before,” said Boggs when describing the bands that he hosts. And one more piece of exciting news: There is never a cover charge.
The Hull Avenue Tavern is a unique place that holds a big spot in the hearts of locals. Boggs is from the Snusville area himself, and growing up the Tavern was always a part of his life, just like many others from the area.
“I looked around at all the remodeling that I had done, and I truly felt it was my own spin on the oldest bar in town,” explained Boggs. “I wanted to put something back into it, and I am proud to hang my name on it. This bar is like an elder grandparent to me, and it deserves to be treated well.” CV
Hull Avenue Tavern
Mon.–Fri. 1 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Sat.–Sun. Noon – 2 a.m.
Mon. Open to close
Tues.–Fri. 4-7 p.m.
834 Hull Ave., Des Moines