Tough Times, Funeral Home Opens Pub in Garage

September 27, 2010
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imagePROVIDENCE, R.I.- Providence city officials have granted a liquor license to the owner of an east side funeral home, clearing the way for the business to open an Irish pub inside.

Mark Russell, who operates Monahan Funeral Home, plans to convert a garage attached to the funeral home into a pub, which will be called McBride’s.

“Inside there will probably be seating for 55 to 60 people,” Russell tells Eyewitness News. “There will be a full kitchen. It will serve pub grub.”

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Monahan Funeral Home is located in Wayland Square, in an area filled with high-end shops.

Area business owners tell Eyewitness News they aren’t thrilled with the idea of a bar opening up in the upscale area.

“We didn’t really want a bar, per se,” Wendy Brown said. “We didn’t want people to start drinking at nine in the morning then stay until two (in the morning).”

To keep his neighbors happy, Russell said he has agreed to several restrictions.

McBride’s will close earlier than other city establishments. It will shut down at 11 p.m. on weeknights and at midnight on weekends.

“Our reputation has been here in Wayland Square since 1934, and on the east side of Providence since 1876,” Russell said. “We’d never allow something to develop that would be adverse to the neighborhood.”

That is something neighbors tell us they can live with.

“New business for Rhode Island is important,” Brown said, referring to the state’s struggling economy and high unemployment rate.

Russell hopes to have McBride’s open by March 1, which would be just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.

Source: WPRI.com

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