Monday, April 4, 2011

The Crystal ...

One more neon photo for today ... this is the Crystal, a dark, blue-collar bar that's been on Bozeman's Main Street for decades.

This is a great sign, though it's actually a fairly recent creation ... the Crystal's original neon sign is now hanging inside the barroom. I confess that I know this because part of my misspent youth was mis-spent at the Crystal. Anticipatory historical research, I suppose ...


  1. Brings back memories of my half-misspent youth in the Bozone as a student in the 70s. Half, because I was still a student with really decent grades and only ventured into those watering holes on the weekends...The Crystal and the Zebra, with breakfast at Manny's (Peter Voulkos' brother's little cafe)--we'd go down to the Zebra and listen to Steve Aaberg play the slide guitar like Ry Cooder, drinking beer till the wee be young and stupid again--well, maybe just young.

  2. I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one who used to hang out at the Crystal! :)

    It seems like just yesterday that I was a college kid heading downtown on a Saturday night ... but it was a while ago, and most of my old haunts are long gone. The Rocking R turned into a fern bar, of course, years before it burned, and my favorite downtown cafe (the Cowboy) disappeared ages ago, too. But the Hofbrau is still just the same, and the Western Cafe ... so happily, a few of the old traditions are still alive.

  3. Oh geez--I'd forgotten about the Hofbrau! I first heard the Mission Mountain Wood Band there, and read the most colorful and memorable poetry on the ladies' restroom walls--which I still recall verbatim. :o} I also recall meeting one of the band, Rob Quist, who was from Cutbank and knew the people I was with. I remember (dimly) the Molly Brown as well, and having to dance straight up because the dance floors were so crowded.

    When some of the bars went disco, it was awful--I hated it! Such memories...Is the Filling Station still extant?

  4. Yeah, I still love the Hof ... no better place to go for a burger and a beer. :)

    The rest of the "bar-muda triangle" still going strong, too -- the Scoop and the Molly -- and the Filler is still there, as well, though I haven't been to any of those places in ages.

    I never got to see M2WB in their original days, but I went to their first reunion concert in Polson back in the 90s ... what an incredible day that was! Such great music, and so many very happy people.

  5. I'll bet everyone was happy to see them! Their music is great! I believe it was '73-'74 when I saw and heard them, freshman year of college, nineteen years old, during the brief time when the drinking age in Montana was 18...what a crazy time! Somehow I've managed to remember most of it!