Friday, May 23, 2014

Suspenders

Founded by a group of firefighters, Suspenders Bar & Restaurant opened on lower Broadway in the Financial District in 1988. Tonight is their last night.


photo: Midtown Lunch

Reader Kevin Corrigan wrote in with the news: "Before I even sat down, I heard one of the bartenders saying, 'Yeah, tomorrow might be the last day.' I ordered a Guinness and overheard a few other things like, 'Are you going to move to another location?' I heard a waitress say, 'It's just too emotional for me right now.'"

The Tribeca Trib reported the story earlier this month, writing that the pub's landlord, Capital Investments, refused to negotiate the lease or give an extension. June 1 was the closing date given, but I called the bar to confirm and tonight is the end for Suspenders. They'll stay open until midnight, as long as they get a crowd.


photo: Kevin Corrigan

After 9/11, Suspenders became a place for first responders to take a break, find community, and forget the pit for a little while. "We were firemen before we were restaurant owners," co-owner Bill Ahearn told the Tribeca Trib, explaining how the place stayed open through the post-9/11 days. The pub's website describes it as "a de facto emotional safe haven...forever rooting itself in New York City history."

So, in the same week that the 9/11 museum opens, with its gift shop filled with commemorative cheese plates of death, a place run by firefighters that served the neighborhood and the people who did the recovery work at Ground Zero just can't get a break in the new New York.


photo: Kevin Corrigan

The owners of Suspenders hope to find a new location in the neighborhood. Follow their Facebook page for updates.

10 comments:

Ken Mac said...

I wonder what year future historians will mark as the date when NYC was officially dead as a cultural mecca and a place of unique neighborhoods transmogrified into a soul-less shopping mall?

Anonymous said...


I think our grandchildren are going to look back at this mass gentrification of NY and think "Were they fucking crazy? Shutting down an icon for a bland business that no one can remember?"

I despair.

Thee Erin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mitch said...

Unfortunately, anon1241, our grandkids won't even know what they're missing.

Louise Murray said...

Sad day. I worked there as a waitress for a period including the post 9/11 days, and it truly did hold the neighbourhood together. It became a haven for many who had lost friends and family on 9/11. You don't get more New York than Billy Ahearn and I wish him and the rest of the Suspenders team all the best. It will always be a special place for me and somewhere that made NY great. Good luck and god bless.

Walter said...

In the deep recesses of my rapidly aging mind, I seem to recall that there was a "Suspenders" in Murray Hill.
Is my mind playing tricks on me, or does anyone else remember that place?

gypsy said...

Right!!!!

Tamara Lubansky said...

Walter you aren't crazy. The original Suspenders was at 38th and 2nd in the late '80's early '90's. It is now called the Bravest, also owned by a firefighter family

Joey Blau said...

I was just saying I had to go there again for dinner...

Anonymous said...

The closing of Suspenders is yet another sad departure of a piece of New York. These guys worked hard all their lives and managed to hold the store open after 911 when others in lower Man could not, now that things are changing they are shown the door by a pos landlord. Many thanks to Billy, Pete, Danny and Tommy all the good times and memories. Kevin D