Food Service & Agriculture, Real Estate, and Retail

Downtown restaurant and bar schedules opening

January 13, 2016
| By Pat Evans |
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The Waldron Public House fish and chips
The Waldron Public House menu features fish and chips. Photo via

A new downtown restaurant and bar is opening soon.

BarFly Ventures said today that The Waldron Public House will open on Feb. 13 in the Waldron Building in Grand Rapids, at 58 Ionia Ave. SW.

The first 50 guests will receive a VIP ticket to the sixth-annual Irish on Ionia on March 19, a $60 value. The second 50 guests will receive a general admission ticket to the event.

Every guest who attends the opening day will receive a free basket of the restaurant’s scalloped waffle fries, beer-battered fries tossed in parmesan-garlic seasoning.

BarFly will close its current restaurant in the space, McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon, on Jan. 30 for the two-week remodel and re-launch. The closure was announced in November.

“While many things are changing here at 58 Ionia, I still wanted this historic building to be a hub for a diverse mix of dining, entertainment and parties,” BarFly Ventures CEO Mark Sellers said. “The Waldron will bring an exciting new dining choice to downtown, while also injecting new life into the city’s nightlife scene.”

The Waldron will be an English-style pub with a variety of menu items based on Colonial England’s empire, such as the lamb butter burger, tandoori chicken sliders, bangers and mac and mushroom pie.

Fridays will feature all-you-can eat fish and chips from 4-9 p.m. for $10 with a drink purchase. Fridays will also feature jazz music from 4-8 p.m.

The Waldron building is named after Lewis Waldron, who built the building in 1894. In the past, the building was home to a hotel and jazz club.

The logo for the restaurant features a gargoyle, and the exterior of the building is dotted with gargoyles.


BarFly Ventures also includes the HopCat bar chain, Grand Rapids Brewing Co. and Stella’s Lounge.

BarFly was started in 2008 with the opening of the original HopCat Grand Rapids.

HopCat locations have since opened in East Lansing, Ann Arbor, Detroit, Indianapolis, Ind. and Madison, Wis., with Lincoln, Neb. set to open in March. BarFly announced Monday the opening of its ninth and largest HopCat location in Louisville, Ky.

With an investment in the company from a private investor last September, BarFly announced plans to open 30 HopCat locations in the next five years.

The company commits to recycling 90 percent or more of its waste. 

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