Historic Bar Floor Gets a Face-lift at Scarlet
When it comes to Spring cleaning, the team at The Scarlet in downtown Leadville just might be setting the “bar” a bit high. Fortunately, this year’s cleaning project should be wrapped up by Happy Hour and the popular watering hole back open for business today.
“We’re trying to take good care of the place,” said Chuck Williams, who owns the historic saloon with his husband Lee Trujillo. And as anyone who owns an historic gem in Leadville, these centurion structures take an enormous amount of tender love and care, if you want them to remain upright.
This year during the seasonal ritual clean, the old wood floor was the project to be tackled. So, once the bar crowd cleared out last Saturday night, the team got right to work starting at 2 a.m. Easter morning. The sanding, the cleaning and sealing took three full days and more elbow grease than it takes to put back a six-pack.
Linda “Ma” Jones who has bartended at The Scarlet for decades, said it probably had been more than 20 years since the barroom floor had been refinished.
But restoring that old bar room floor weren’t nothin’ that an orbital sander, 20 grit sandpaper, mild bleach to raise the wood grain, and some deck and siding stain couldn’t fix.
“We wanted to leave it a bit on the rough side,” explained Williams, “leave some of the floor’s character in place.”
Of course, once the cleaning got underway and the furniture got moved around, you just never know what an old bar will give up. Williams discovered an old whiskey bottle, with some aged hooch in tack, although no one seemed anxious to test it out.
However, the old stopper is certainly a testament to the quality cork they used back in the day, NOT today’s synthetic kind but rather a more hearty harvest that allowed the plug to hold its place all these years later.
So now that the floor project is complete, it’s time for some dancing, drinking and pool playing! So round up your buddies, chalk up your stick and put on your dancing shoes because this Friday April 1 the Scarlet will host some live music – no fooling!
Horizon Line is a Colorado Jam band that pays tribute to a variety of jam, blues, and rock bands through an ever-changing array of covers. The show starts at 8 p.m. and there is NO cover.