Reporting Matt Brickman
Filed underBest of, Consumer, Drink, Food, Food & Drink, Local, News, Seen On WCCO-TV, Syndicated Local, Watch + Listen
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — We are in the middle of March Madness, and on Thursday and Friday, there were as many as four games going on simultaneously.
It’s simply too much hoops for your living room to handle, so this week Matt Brickman went in search to find the best sports bar in Minnesota.
The people spoke, and chose a bar that’s been a staple in St. Louis Park for 80 years — Bunny’s Bar & Grill.
“We just take these two days off of work and we live and breathe NCAA basketball,” Brian Vik said. “We sit right here and do it.”
If Brian Vik and Greg Hannon have the best seats at Bunny’s, it’s because they’ve earned them.
“I’ve actually been coming here since about 1965, when it was the Anchor Inn, so I’ve been in this building since I was 7,” Hannon said.
Back then, Bunny’s was just across Highway 100, but they’ve been in St. Louis Park for the better part of a century.
Gary Rackner and his father Sherman took over Bunny’s in 1988. There have only been two ownerships since 1933.
The original owners — the Aretz family — plus a sloppy sign-maker are responsible for the name.
“The sign-maker had goofed up on a sign and he said, ‘Do you want this sign, really cheap? The only thing is, it says Bunny’s on it.’ The people said, ‘Yeah, we’ll take it.’ And it’s been Bunny’s since 1933,” Rackner said.
The name isn’t the only thing that’s unconventional about Bunny’s. They’re one of the few sports bars that prides itself on their breakfast, which comes with a free Bloody Mary or screwdriver.
But they’re also all about the basics, too — pulltabs, popcorn and a whole ton of TV sets.
“It’s not just like sports are on TV and it’s there for background noise,” Rackner said. “People are watching the games.”
Bunny’s isn’t just a sports bar. It’s a bar for sports fans, which is why Vik and Hannon come here every year to kick off March Madness.
“This is the headquarters,” Hannon said. “It’s just got the perfect vibe, whether you’re a couple, whether you’re a family, or your with a bunch of guys, anybody can come into this bar & feel comfortable, that’s the best part about it.”