Ruby’s Bar and Grill in Coney Island is currently undergoing a full renovation which, thanks to owner Michael Sarrel, will include the use of reclaimed wood from Coney’s world-famous Riegelmann Boardwalk.
The repurposed boards will decorate the soon-to-be revived watering hole, which opened in 1934 – a year after Prohibition ended, allowing it to retain some of its old-timey appeal, reports the Brooklyn Paper.
From Brooklyn Paper:
“We want to make sure that we keep all of our loyal customers,” Sarrel said. “Using the Boardwalk wood was the perfect way to do that.”
Sarrel is spending $10,000 to rebuild Ruby’s bar with wood from the walkway. The taproom’s wainscoting, bathroom and parts of its ceiling will also feature pieces of repurposed timber from the iconic Boardwalk, which opened in 1923.
Sarrel said he got the wood for free from the Parks Department, which ripped up sections of the Boardwalk as part of its $30-million renovation of the aging, 2.3-mile span, which stretches from Brighton Beach to Sea Gate.
Farrel told the Paper that he’s putting a total of $100,000 into the business – which would have been just a memory if an eleventh hour agreement with landlord Zamperla hadn’t been reached.
Advocates of a wooden boardwalk, whose efforts to prevent a section in Brighton Beach from being rebuilt in plastic and concrete had recently been defeated, rejoiced that the ripped out planks wouldn’t be straying far from home.
“It keeps a historic part of Coney Island alive,” Todd Dobrin, the president of Friends of the Boardwalk told Brooklyn Paper.
Sarrel said the construction will include new floors, lighting, and bathrooms in addition to the dozens of decorative pieces of boardwalk lumber.
The article did not mention when Ruby’s would reopen, but most expect the work will be completed in time for Memorial Day Weekend – which marks the start of the Amusement Area’s seven-day-a-week summer season.