Hungry Chuck's Cafe sees huge turnout for last night at current location

Over the course of Tuesday evening, hundreds of students and local residents trickled into the popular bar one last time.

Yes, hundreds of Syracuse University students paid the $20 cover to drink one last pitcher of cheap beer and paint their names on the walls of Hungry Chuck’s Café before it closed for good on Tuesday.

Before the doors were supposed to open at 7 p.m., at least 50 people were already lined up in the alleyway outside the popular student bar. Bodyguards tried to corral students into a single-file line, delaying the official opening of Chuck’s last night by 25 minutes.

Photo: Ellen Meyers
The line outside of Chuck's on Tuesday extended all the way back to South Crouse Avenue.

Earlier this semester, news broke that 727 S. Crouse Ave. commercial complex would be torn down for a luxury mixed-use building built by real estate firm BLVD Equities. Initially, Chuck’s owner Steve Theobald said it would have a space in the new building,  according to The Daily Orange. Then the bar got into several disputes with BLVD Equities, including a restraining order against Chuck’s landlord, and that plan went up in smoke.

But there is hope for Syracuse University community members who still want to #SaveChucks: a staffer told The NewsHouse that Theobald is looking at properties within about a mile radius of the original location of Chuck’s to house the popular bar. 

Throughout the evening, students reminisced over their fond memories. Crystal Soo, an environmental engineering senior, said Chuck's was the first Syracuse bar she went to when she turned 21 in 2016. 

"I'm going to miss Chuck's so much," she said. "I'm so sad that it's closing!" But, Soo added that she was happy that she was able to come with the friends that brought her to Chuck's on her most recent birthday. 

Some students, however, thought one last round at Chuck's was not worth the expensive cover. Tahirah Newkirk, a public relations and international relations senior, said as much as she loves Chuck's, she did not want to shell out $20 to get into a bar on a Tuesday night. Other students criticized the establishment on social media for charging extra on the last nights of business. 

The Chuck's staff posted on Facebook last week that they had to bump up the cover to help with their legal fees from fighting for the right to stay open. This included a $10 cover charge Thursday through Saturday night. The cover is usually $5 on weekend nights, which is what most bars around the Marshall Street area charge.

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