If you happened to pass by The Buckaroo Tavern last night, you probably knew something was going on. The place was packed shoulder to shoulder pretty much all night, but especially at night, as old friends and new fans gathered to raise a few glasses to one of the city’s most beloved watering holes. Motorcycles surrounded the front of the building at 4201 N. Fremont Ave. N. and one reveler burned rubber and exhaust fumes onto folks sitting in the outside patio area.
Patrons arriving after 7 p.m. had to bore a tunnel to the bar, which was slammed all night with orders as everyone wanted to drink one last beer (or a few) at this 72-year-old establishment. The long goodbye began months ago with flyers and tips from you, our readers.
Last night’s last hurrah was the culmination of 7 days of celebrations, said Buckaroo owner Donna Morey, who has run it since 1984. (It was supposed to be only three days.) Her grandson Christopher Morey was busy behind the bar all night, trying to keep up with non-stop demand for microbrews and “cheap beers.”
For a history of the Moreys’ time with the Buck, check out this write-up and video.
One former fixture, a tough as nails biker broad who calls her Harley “Buttercup,” who is also a physician’s assistant that doesn’t hesitate to help strangers in need, Donna Morey’s good friend Rusty, traveled from Spokane to take part in the Buck’s final days. She and her son Guido used to come here all the time. She was a regular years before the Moreys took over, but her loyalty is to them.
“Donna would make Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas,” Rusty said. “A lot of people here, they don’t have family, so this is our family.”
Anytime she needed help, she knew she could rely on her friends at the Buck.
When asked where they’ll end up going, regulars said they’d probably end up at The 2 Bit Saloon in that border area of Fremont and Ballard, on Leary (4818 17th Ave. NW).
Every third Thursday is Rat Bike Night, and more than likely, you’ll see more than a few regulars from the Buck.