Area Bartenders Reflect on a Rival

Mars BarRoey Ahram

Area bartenders discuss the closing of Mars Bar and the question of commercialization versus preservation.

Mark Trzupek, manager of Life Café, 343 East 10th Street

“I don’t have any respect for landlords who come in and try to make money off people who have been here for 30 years and who took a risk in coming down here in the first place. Evolution always comes but at what cost? It’s changing the look of the neighborhood.”

Pepe Zwaryczuk, bartender at McSorley’s Old Ale House, 15 East Seventh Street

“Isn’t it a natural progression of life? It’s like how when Henry Hudson went up the river, the Indians looked over and said ‘There goes the neighborhood!’”

Randy Weinberg, manager of The Boiler Room, 86 East Fourth Street

“I’m absolutely 100 percent for it” — closing. “It’s all criminal to me, that they make their money off all the people that other bars throw out. It’s a real seedy crowd with a lot of drunks, a lot of druggies, and a lot of pickpockets. It’s not that they’re our competition because they take everyone we throw out because they’re bad. It’s a bad scene. It’s a part of the old East Village but really it’s time for it to go.”

Mars BarMeghan Keneally
Josh Boyd, manager of Ella, 9 Avenue A

“It’s the end of an era. They’ve been here forever and it’s really a symbol of what’s going on — whether it’s willing or unwilling.”

Raymond Lycholat, manager of Big Bar, 73 East Seventh Street

“It’s been here since I’ve been here. It’s been a bar basically for residents of the Bowery and it’s just changing with the times and that’s just amazing in itself. It’s become an icon. I always have tourists from Japan coming in here asking ‘Mars Bar, Mars Bar’ so it’s really become an icon. I’m sure he” — the owner — “got a good price for the place.”