Riverfront Pizza plans expansion
It was Wednesday at the Riverfront Pizza and Suds in Dolores and that could mean only one thing - time to play pool.
Riverfront has been the unofficial gathering place for a large group of pool junkies who were left homeless following the devastating fire that burned the Hollywood Bar last August.
"I called her and said, 'Sheri we don't have a place to go.' And I haven't missed a single Wednesday yet," said Lynn Hilton.
Riverfront Pizza owner Sheri Schiess quickly installed a pool table at the restaurant and the rest was history.
This Wednesday, a group of about 10 or 12 people gathered around the table, laughed, joked, poked light-hearted fun at each other and played a bit of pool. Most of the crew used to hang out at the Hollywood bar and play pool.
Not only did Hilton play pool at the Hollywood, but she managed and bartended at the bar for 35 years.
On Monday, the Dolores Town Board voted to give Schiess a full liquor license. The restaurant can already serve wine and beer, the decision Monday makes Riverfront Pizza the only place in town that will serve hard alcohol since the Hollywood Bar burned down last summer.
"We can start serving alcohol at the end of March," owner Schiess said.
Schiess owns the restaurant with her mother, Pat Redburn.
Hilton said she approached Schiess about the full liquor license.
"Do you realize there isn't a place to get whiskey in Dolores?" she recalled asking.
In addition, Schiess embarked on a remodeling project this week that will expand the restaurant by 900 square feet and add more deck around the building so more patrons can sit out by the river. The remodel will also see the addition of more pool tables at the restaurant, a jukebox and a place for bands and dancing.
Schiess said they will start serving hard alcohol, most likely, at the end of the month, once the liquor application is processed by the state. She hopes to have a grand opening for the new improvements by the end of May.
The remodel will also see a new kitchen, built at the back of the bar and a fence constructed along the river.
"I think it will help the town," said Schiess. "It's not just a bar, but family dining as well."
Schiess also plans on expanding the menu so more will be offered besides pizza.
She also plans on keeping the restaurant open during expansion.
"I think it's going to be something new for the town," Schiess said. "The Hollywood will never be replaced but the town needs a place to go."