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Good news for dive fans: New owners of Mary Ann's, the Tam and Beacon Hill Pub plan no changes

A group of real-estate investors who recently bought Mary Ann's in Cleveland Circle, the Beacon Hill Pub and the Tam in the Theater District told the Boston Licensing Board today that the only changes they will make to the watering holes is to hire new managers - including one better known for running more upscale eateries in JP.

The board decides tomorrow whether to approve long-time bar owner Barry Bornstein's request to sell the three bars' licenses - at $250,000 apiece - to a group headed by Fred Starikov and Steve Whalen of City Realty. Their new company, Greater Boston Bar Co., is also buying the buildings that house the bars for a total of $8.6 million.

"There will not be any changes" at the Tam, Greater Boston's attorney, Michael Ford, told the board. He made similar assurances about Mary Ann's, which has been serving BC students for more than five decades, and the Beacon Hill Pub.

In addition to deciding whether to approve the license sale, the board must also approve the proposed new managers for the bars.

Greater Boston attorney Michael Ford said Mary Ann's would be run by Keith Harmon, best known as part of a group that owned Casa Verde and the Centre Street Cafe in Jamaica Plain.

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Comments

Would be to curb the ongoing underage drinking at Mary Ann's.... ah, to dream...

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After the licensing board threatened, after decades, to actually do something. Probably didn't hurt them that that pizza place on Chestnut Hill Avenue opened with a liquor license - and an inability to keep the pre-21 set out.

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those using fake IDs (and the inevitable "continued without a finding" slap on the wrist doesn't count), I suspect word would spread pretty quickly that it's not worth the risk to even try.

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Perhaps if they dropped the drinking age to 18 or 19 like the rest of the non-Islamic world it wouldn't be an issue.

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Back in the 1970s they did drop the MA drinking age to 18 for a couple of years then decided it wasn't a good idea and ran it back up to 21 again.

The problem now is that there are many proposed age ranges that attempts to determine "adult thinking," "age of consent," "age of majority," "age of responsibility," and "age for voting," "age for conscription (military registrations)" and so on. As of today there are existing laws and various proposals to change laws that put that into anything from 18 to 25 for drinking, smoking, voting, sex, marriage, etc, etc, etc.

What is needed is to get this figured out, set an age for everything across the board, and live with it so you don't have to best-guess whose standard you are trying to hold on to.

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The drinking age was 18 in Massachusetts from 1972 to 1979, at which point is was raised to 19 by then governor Ed King and ultimately to 21 when Ronald Reagan standardized it nationwide. I was around during the 18 year old drinking era and there was not a significantly higher instance of DUIs among that age group. In fact everything was very business-as-usual. Both King and Reagan were Republicans and what is now forgotten is that the raising of the drinking age was very much part of the "let's get things like they used to be back in the 50s and forget the 60s and 70s ever happened" kind of movement. Believe me, that whole "make America great again" thing didn't originate with Trump. It originated with the 1980s.

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Reagan didn't quite standardize it - he merely threatened to cut off any states money that didn't do what he wanted...

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went to 20 in in like June. I wouldn't turn 20 until end of August. I couldn't legally drink for 2 months after legally drinking for almost 2 years.
When it went to 21 you were "grandfathered" in if you were under 21....

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Look across the border at our closest neighbor.

Sadly, too many decisions get made because the feels of olds are hurt if "those kids blah blah blah". Enough. Time to stop the infantalization.

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The drinking age dropped because of the Vietnam Nam war. So many young people were being drafted that they thought if you can serve and die, you should be able to drink.

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We don't need a bunch of kids running around with convictions for something so minor and dumb. Look around and I bet 30%-75% of your siblings/peers would have a criminal record if we were always so zealous.

We don't need to condone it. But IMHO it's a victimless crime, at least directly.

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his work at the group that includes Tres Gatos, Casa Verde, and the revitalized Centre Street Cafe (just re-invented again as Little Dipper, a diner-like concept), but he's a seasoned pro, knows how to train a front-of-house staff.

I wish him luck in this very different context. We all know Boston's dive bars are melting away; any effort to stem the tide of gentrification is a blessing, in my book. I've seen too many fine, modest neighborhood spots disappear here.

RIP, oh, about a hundred bygone places where I passed at least a few happy hours draining shots and beers over the years in Boston, but I'll shout out T.C.'s Lounge, the Drinking Fountain, the Hammond, the Waltham Tavern, the Quencher, Old Sully's, Jack Lynch's Webster Lounge, The Abbey (though I like Trina's / Parlor Sports), the Choppin' Block, Packy Connor's, The Williams, and Razzy's.

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Mary Ann's scanner is so compliant they told me my ID was fake even as a legal 27 year old

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...those 3 bars were owned by the same person. Makes sense now that you think about it.

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The Bow And Arrow Pub (Harvard Square where Grafton Street is now)

The Cambridgeport Saloon (the former Father's Four) (Central Square / MIT)

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So what happens to Sullivan's Tap by North Station that is also owned by Bornstein.

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That place cranks during Bruins/Celts season. Best priced / only place with games in the Garden vicinity.

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Mary Ann"s hasn't been around under that name for "five decades". It was previously "The Reservoir Cafe". As a BC student in the late 60's/early 70's, we used to have pools about when the first "MTA" driver would fall off his stool. (The car barn next door would distribute paychecks at the end of Friday shifts. More than one was cashed there.) Good times!

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..PJ Kilroys.. actually nevermind, lets call all of these the Fathers bars again!

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