Coffs Hotel celebrates 80 years
STEP back in time with the Coffs Hotel today as the 80-year-old "grand dame" puts on her 1930s best.
For eight decades, patrons have been coming to the Coffs Hotel for fun, food and entertainment, and on Saturday you're invited to dress in vintage '30s gear and come along for a big birthday bash.
The doors first opened at this beloved family-owned local in 1937.
She has seen good times and bad. Fire, flood and the forming of many friendships are all part of the history of this distinctive brick building in the middle of town.
Popular publican Marty Philips knows today's celebrations are going to be special.
"We're all so excited," Marty said.
"There is quite a bit on - we're open during the day, then local identity and ballad singer Errol Gray will be in the front bar at 5pm, Tallowood and the Big Boogie Band are going to give us lots of great music, and even the boys in the kitchen are turning back the clock with a traditional menu of lambs fry and bacon, corn beef and white sauce, home-made apple pie and good old-fashioned bread and butter pudding."
From karaoke, king prawns and soccer grand final presentations to family dinners and supporting local bands and charities, the Coffs Hotel is a meeting place and at the heart of many local celebrations - with more than a few locals meeting their significant other at 'The Coffs'.
"I enjoy running this pub immensely and have met so many great people over the years," Marty said.
"We've seen quite a few couples meet. I've been to two weddings of people who met in the pub and held a wedding reception here for another couple."
In the past 12 years, the grand lady has had quite a facelift. She was rebuilt with community support after the 2005 fire and since then a new beer garden, cafe, bistro and alfresco and indoor dining have been added.
"The hotel industry is changing and we have to keep changing with it to keep up with what our patrons want. We serve our community, we're the hub of the town and I look forward to the future," Marty said.
But today is all about celebrating the Coffs Hotel's past and Marty is putting out the call for everyone to come along and if anyone has memorabilia or photos of the pub, he'd love you to share them.
"I don't normally have a drink but today I think I'll blow the froth off a couple.
"It's going to be a great celebration and hopefully I'll see plenty of faces of past patrons and staff."