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« Wednesday, April 28th, 2010—Bar 108 | Main | Monday, April 26th, 2010—Bar 106 »

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010—Bar 107

Day 107—Monday, April 26th, 2010


First off, I want to thank Peoria Journal Star writer, Phil Luciano for giving the 365 Bars site a shoutout in his column today. You can read about it here: Phil’s Downtown Walkabout. Thanks Phil, and if you keep reading, you’ll see more Luciano in today’s bar crawl.

Okay, another walk down memory lane for me this afternoon in Peoria, Illinois. I’m going to go to Sully’s, a bar that Mike Sullivan was the original proprietor and owner. He sold it years ago, but it maintained the same Sully spirit through the decades. And now it’s been about twenty years since I’ve been in here, I’m having lunch with the aforementioned Phil Luciano, so let’s make tracks!

My dad was dropping me off, but we were a little early, so we decided to stop off for some ice cream at Emack & Bolio's, the best ice cream Peoria has to offer. It's located at 4534 N. Prospect Road in Peoria Heights. Here's an article by Steve Tarter that was published in the Journal Star when the store opened over a year ago: Ice Cream Heats Up The Heights.

Here's the owners, Jim and Tim. Two owners whose name's rhyme. It kind of makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Or maybe it's just the five Advil's I just took.

They feature lots of specialty ice cream products as well as cones, sundaes and you can get it to go as well. They have flavors and varieties you won't find anywhere else in town. Plus the owner's name's rhyme. I just can't let that go!

This is artwork done by my brother, Jim "Swami" Wombacher. I'm proud to have it hanging in the store.

Here's a trio of hooligan's you don't want to meet in a dark alley. Phil "The Bruiser" Hennessey, Tim "Brother Glover" Hennessey and Gerry "The Junkyard Dog" Wombacher.

Okay, enough ice cream, time to have a few afternoon brews.

Lots of colorful neon decorate the windows.

Sully's has a nice outside dining area out front for when the weather's nice. I'd sit outside, but I'm allergic to sunshine. That happens when you've worked the night shift since 1985. To quote Keef Richards, "The sunshine bores the daylights outta me."

Here we are, just like the other day at Jimmy's, it's like a walk down memory lane!

It's me and the Looch! Phil Luciano and I had a great four-course lunch of, that's right, four draft beers. In addition to writing for the Peoria Journal Star, Phil is one half of the morning radio team of Markley and Luciano on 102.3 Max FM—Everything That Rocks. They're live on the air from 5:30 am to 9:00 am. Check the show out here: Markley and Luciano.

Danielle was the lovely bartender for the afternoon.

Peoria's Irish Embassy.

Jared was enjoying lunch at Sully's. He works across the street for Chase Bank. When I inquired about a business loan for this site, he just laughed and said, "You better hope people hit that PayPal button!"

Ya gotta love a pub that has a machine that offers the three staples of life: Candy, chips and cigarettes.

Chris and Aaron were working on a booth that will be featured in the middle of the bar. Cheers, guys!

And a blast from my past, John Martin!


Chris and Dawn were on there way out, but I corralled them for a photo before they left. Chris is the Program Director at 1049 The Wolf radio here in Peoria. Check it out: 1049 The Wolf.

There's comfortable booths on either side of the bar.

Alright, somebody hoisting a shot in the middle of the afternoon. These are my kind of people! Ed and Kelly were taking a little break in the day at Sully's.

Rudolf the Irish Reindeer...

I used to close this place at four in the morning, now I can't make it past four in the afternoon! Goodnight everybody!


Sully’s bar was founded in 1973 and has the distinction of being Peoria’s oldest downtown bar. The bar is loaded with chock-a-block memorabilia, antiques and pictures. There’s a horseshoe bar in the back and booths and tables are on opposite sides of the bar. There’s a front dining area with lots of tables and in the spring and summer months, outside dining and drinking are available at the comfortable tables on the outside patio.

Sully’s is well known as a pub that has a full bar with a multitude of domestic and imported beers. It’s also a restaurant with a full menu of pub grub including mozzarella sticks, potato skins, sandwiches and burgers. They also have a variety of wings and it’s rumored that their Reuben sandwich is one of the best in town.

Sully’s is open late on Friday and Saturday till four in the morning. I remember closing the joint back in my crazy-ass youth, but now I go in the daytime. Let the next generation close these joints down now, I’ve done my time!


121 SW Adams, Peoria, Illinois


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Reader Comments (14)

Looks like you are having a blast back in your old hometown! When are you hitting the windy city? Cheers and 365 beers!

It's been a stone-blast, Professor! I'll be in Chicago, Thursday and Friday! Cheers to you all!

April 27, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

Hey Daddio!
Glad you've been able to take the crawl to places where the original crawls began.
Great walk down (as I say) "Lack of Memory Lane".
Nothing like seeing old friends along the way as well.
We did a few things right in this lifetime.

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter"Boris"

Wow Marty I am really enjoying this part of the crawl.
I want ice cream now...

I love that you are able to bring us home with you and we can feel you being there.
This is just fucking amazing:)

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGidget

mmmm...love a guy who knows how to handle his tools! thanks for the construction guy pics marty!

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKim

Yo Mark-
I found you because of Luciano's shout out in his column today. I read the damn PJS to help keep up on the ol' neighborhoods.. I am an expatriate Peorian also having left the relative security of Peoria Heights to make my way in the world starting in New Orleans in 1975 and invite you to vist for a few brews. My dime. You can get fake New Orleans just about anywhere including New York but you can only get the real thing here.

Quick question...is the John Martin you noted above the brother of Jim Martin? It's been so long since I've seen John I'm kinda doubting it's Jims brother but would like to be sure.

And another thing...the picture of Luciano here makes him look like Lewis Black. I'll bet he wishes he was just as fuggin funny!

You got a good gig goin here man...if you don't make it to New Orleans by bar # 240 or so I'll be happy to kick in a few dinero to help keep you goin'

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterdirtman

I vote you go to New Orleans and you'll probably need a personal assistant for that trip and I know just the person and her name starts with B and ends with iff. I'll put her in touch with you.

As for Sully's, it looks like a nice joint! I like the lighting in there and the patio will be great as soon as the tree pollen subsides. Also, I like the idea of a horseshoe bar. Next time I date a jockey, I'm going to take him there. Do they have booster seats? Anyhoo, thanks for taking us along to the ice cream shop and the bar. And FYI, Fat Tire is a great brew!

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

The Bar Crawl Road Show Is Great !!! & maybe you should take it to New Orleans , sounds like fun .
I still haven't learned the ink jets , been hiding , & want Frank or You to train Me !!!

hahaha, "The Junkyard Dog", classic!....& New Orleans is well worth a littl' look see....ya might have to dip into pay pal & shout yourself a new liver after New Orleans, great fun place...

April 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfitzy

To Solliy's, To Peoria!

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Ice cream yum Ice cream yum ICE CREEEEAM YUUUM!!!!!!
Ilike your brother's artwork, very talented !
Me too I vote for you to go in New Orleans !!! and after, get a passport and come in Fance!! :D

Love the last photo! Great road trip so far!

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBarfly

I'm leaving for New Orleans on August 29.........Be down there for a week! Hope you can hold off till then! No shortage of great bars down there. The Old Point Bar on the west bank across the river is one of my favorites.........but any bar will make me happy!

Very cool bar with friendly smiling people, what more could one ask for! I love it!!

April 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTiki Bar Susie

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