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Our Story

Thank you to everyone that has helped us become a favorite locals bar.

In March, 2010 Wayne Cavalier and I wanted to add something to do in Perdido Key for families.  We decided to open an internet café/game room with hotdogs & popcorn. After we found someone that had some old games (Pacman, Centipede, etc.) we rented two units in the Villagio Shopping Center. Remember, this was before everyone had internet on their cell phones! We thought it would be pretty cool to be able to come play a couple of internet games or check your e-mail while you were on vacation.  Wow – technology sure has changed!!

Everything was ready to open when the BP Oil Spill happened in April.  The man that had the games told us that he would not put his machines in Perdido Key and that we were crazy to try to open anything right after the oil spill since the Gulf Coast would be a ghost town.

Well, Wayne said, “Let’s go to Plan B – Let’s open a Sports Bar”  By August we were open as the Sports Bar of Perdido Key.  We had 12 TVs, 10 draft beer taps, ice cold bottles and three bartenders.

After three days we found out that if we didn’t sell liquor, we weren’t going to make it.  So the hunt was on for a liquor license – not that easy to find in Escambia County. Within two weeks we found the license and we were selling liquor.

We quickly became the favorite new place for locals to hang out.  Because I was from north of Buffalo, New York, I couldn’t imagine a bar without Buffalo Wings. We found out that we didn’t have enough room for a kitchen so our kitchen expert told us to use a cook trailer.  We added Buffalo Wings, Burgers, French Fries & Hot Dogs and we were in the restaurant business!

Along the way, we found out that Wayne’s cancer was coming back with a vengeance. We spent most of 2012 going back and forth to MD Anderson in Houston. Luckily by this time, both of my daughters, Jennifer and Stephanie Davis, had started working for us because by October, 2012, Wayne was in the hospital in New Orleans and I was sleeping in a chair next to him.  The girls ran the business from October until February when they transferred Wayne back to Pensacola, where he died on February 24th.

During this time we found out that the bar wasn’t going to work out at the Villagio anymore so we purchased the old Panama Mac’s building and with the help of our many friends, we closed the old location in October, 2013, gutted the new building and working day and night, we were able to open back up in ten days!!  Our friends worked their regular jobs and came after work and we all worked well into the night cleaning, organizing and building the new bar.  Our vendors even loaded up their company trucks and hauled everything around the corner into our new building.

During the end of the old bar and the beginning of the new bar, we were lucky enough to lure Jim Martin (the chef at the former Reef Restaurant) out of retirement and into our kitchen.  We were able to add Jim Martin’s original Grouben Sandwich, (with fresh grouper), prime rib sandwiches, fresh shrimp, chicken sandwiches, etc.

So with the move, we changed the name to Perdido Key Sports Bar, added music three nights a week, Steak night on Wednesday, Prime Rib on Fridays and Saturdays and recently added Fish Tacos and some of the best hamburgers you’ll ever find.

Today my daughters, Jennifer and Stephanie, still work with me as a family team and we are lucky enough to say that the majority of our employees (friends) have been with us over two years, with many over three years.

It hasn’t been easy but we truly believe that most of our customers are repeat customers.  Our snow birds usually come see us before they even check in to their condo. Our vacationers remind us that they were there “just last year” and usually tell us what they ordered to eat and how much they missed the food and the friends they made.

We believe very strongly in Perdido Key.  Two years ago I was elected to the Board of Directors of the Perdido Key Area Chamber of Commerce.  We happily give as much as we can to the sports teams in our area.  We feel that our restaurant/bar is a safe place for anyone to visit – whether they come for Happy Hour during the day or hang out with us on a Friday night listening to a fantastic area band.

Thank you to everyone that has helped us become a favorite locals bar.


Judy Davis