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Whiskey Light – A Put-in-Bay Tradition

The Whiskey Light, hanging over the Round House Bar entrance, is one of the most symbolic icons of Put-in-Bay. When lit, local islanders, tourists, and boaters know the season has started. The tradition dates back over 30 years, this annual tradition is one of the most anticipated events of the year with Put-in-Bay Hotels full and tourists anxious to begin the party.

For over 140 years of history, the Round House Bar is a well know Put-in-Bay landmark. The lighting ceremony begins at 2:00 PM and goes well into the evening. Local musician Ray Fogg is the EMC for the event. Be sure to visit the Put-in-Bay Entertainment schedule to see what bands will be playing.

Whiskey Light & The Round House Bar History

The Columbia Restaurant opened in downtown Put-in-Bay in 1873. Well known at the time for their wide selection of wine, beer, and ice-cold treats such as cottage cheese and ice cream. Somewhere near 15 years later, the building was renamed the Round House Bar. In 1944 the Greunke family purchased the bar for $11,000, and the Cincinnati Brewing Company built the round bar.

Owner Mrs. Greunke was a local musician who played the piano at the bar. The stage was moved behind the bar. She would not have to play with her back to the crowd any longer. When entering the Round House Bar guests will see the acoustical canopy installed in the bar for sound purposes. It has since replaced in several variations.

In the 1950s, the bar was sold to the McCann family where it remains today. They currently own the Round House and are responsible for the iconic RED Exterior we see today. The vast majority of the original building and plaster walls remain intact. For decades the Round House Bar has been known as one of the most enjoyed bars on the island.

Accommodations Near the Whiskey Lighting at the Round House Bar

Join us for the most anticipated Put-in-Bay Ohio celebration of the season! Check out new hotels and rental homes options on our Put-In-Bay Hotels & Lodging resource page. See you at the Whiskey Light Celebration!