Blog powered by Typepad
Member since 03/2004

« Library event gets the lead out of toys | Main | Fire destroys Harvard Place home »

December 07, 2007



Davis Square has a nightlife and is much more than a quiet residential neighborhood. Additionally, this clearly isn't fair to the Joshua Tree, which has been a good establishment. They should get the 2 AM license.

Resident Bob

Jeez, let them stay open. I live in the square- right up the road from the bar. Sure, it can get somewhat loud late at night once in a while. Big deal, it's the city. And, that people are walking around late at night, I think, keeps the vehicle break-in guys away. My vehicle hasn't been touched in years now.

A Matter of Time

Anyone who didn't expect this has their head in the sand. You simply can't hand a 'special' license to one establishment without giving it to others. The problem is, it's just a matter of time before this spreads to other bars all across the city. The argument will be 'we're losing business to the late bars in Davis Square - we need this to compete' - we've heard it all before. Then of course Store 24 and 7/11 will need to be open until at least 2 also. Allowing The Burren to have a 2 am license, even as an 'experiment' was a massive, massive mistake.

Ron Newman

A number of other Somerville bars had 2 am licenses (Friday and Saturday only) even before the Burren. I don't remember the whole list, but they include PJ Ryan's in Teele Square and the Independent in Union Square.


Why hasn't the somerville news commented on the fire in somerville last night? The other paper has...


The problem is having the selective licenses. It's never fair. What I've never understood is how closing at 1am prevents drunks puking in the streets. If the bars close at 1am, I go out at 8pm. If they close at 2am, I go out at 9pm. I've been to NY many times and having the bars open until 4am doesn't seem to cause more problems. Most people who drink to oblivion can figure out how to get the job done in however much time they have available. They just drink faster. The rest of us just enjoy having a few drinks and hanging out until we want to go home.

Worst experience I've had was watching a Sox playoff game this year at the Joshua Tree. The game went into extra innings and it was very exciting. But alas, 1am rolled around and I was kicked out onto the street. There was no where to watch the game that I'd committed hours to already. The Burren wouldn't let me in so I had to go home. By the time I got home, the game was over and I missed everything. I was even willing to stick around at the tree if they closed the bar. Let us watch the game but don't serve drinks if they have to.

Ron Newman

A correction to this article (and also the hotel article): "Lee Aussipitz" should actually be "Lee Auspitz". He's one of the Davis Square Task Force regulars. I think he goes all the way back to the task force's beginning in the late 1970s.

Otherwise, great reporting on two subjects that the Journal hasn't covered at all.

it *is* funny

I'm back. Couldn't stay away ... for exactly this kind of reporting that is head and shoulders above the other paper. They can handle the fire -- and they've done a very good job with that one, especially those pictures! -- but you guys should stick to reporting on things like this that matter a lot to everyone in the Ville, be they moonbat, old school, yuppy or somewhere in between. Good job guys.

Ron Newman

The noise from these bars and their patrons never comes down to my part of Davis Square (Day and Orchard streets), so the 2 am licenses don't affect me personally. But there are a lot of licenses in and around the square, and I can sympathize with neighbors who foresee problems if everyone goes to 2 am.

These are the full liquor licenses I can think of right now in Davis Square; have I left any out? Orleans, Johnny D's, Mike's, The Burren, Joshua Tree, Diva Lounge, Redbones, Sligo, Rosebud, Sagra. (I can't remember if Gargoyles is a full license or just beer and wine, but in any event they're much more restaurant than bar.)

Green Cabbie

If you want to live right in or directly adjacent to a city square, and enjoy all the amenities that offers (short walk to the T and restaurants, valuable real estate, total convenience), you have to put up with some of the negatives - multiple bars, extra traffic, extra noise. What's the difference if the drunks are bothering you at 1am or 2am? If crowds of people having a good time on weekends keeps you awake, move to West Medford or Arlington. Somerville bars absolutely should have the option to serve until 2am - if those licenses were spread around, you wouldn't have people concentrated at the few places with the 2am licenses. Everything would be exactly the same as before, just an hour later than before. Somerville's bars were here long before the vast majority of the complainers, who *chose* to move into the most active part of a densely populated city. Deal with it, or move to the suburbs!

Dave S.

I think some of the people cited in the article certainly have been around longer than *most* of the bars like Joshua Tree.


I don't think you can live in a neighborhood squeezed between a Central Business District (which is what Davis Square is) and a major university and expect the streets to be quiet at night, no matter what time the bars close. If you live near a college, be it in the country or the city, you will occasionally find vomit on the sidewalk or hear loud drunks passing by.

People fear Davis turning into Allston or reverting to the days of the Blarney or the Surrey Room, but I don't think an extra two hours of bar service a week is going to make the place either of those.

Ron Newman

I'd say that most of the older folks at the Davis Square Task Force meeting lived in Davis Square long before the Burren, Joshua Tree, Diva Lounge, Sagra, or Orleans opened. (Hell, I was in Davis before any of those.) Some were probably there before Redbones or Mike's or even Johnny D's. I doubt that any of them predate the Rosebud or Sligo.


I live in Davis Square, and would be happy if everything was open til 2. The point of living close to a major square is to have more things to do NEAR where you live.

Ron Newman

I'd actually like the Store 24 to be open 24 hours. My understanding is that it closes at midnight because the people who live above it could not sleep, due to noise from the parking lot. The answer to that is to chain off the parking lot at midnight but leave the store open.


At 2AM, I like to be asleep.


If the city had a blanket 1 a.m. closing policy, while I wouldn't agree with it, I would understand the reasoning. But since some establishments can be open til 2 a.m., it really just doesn't seem to make sense to limit others from doing the same thing if they have solid records, don't serve minors, and additionally are located in the economic centers of the city or are generally not near residential homes. I don't go to Joshua Tree very often but it just is an issue of fairness in my mind.

Ron Newman

It's hard to really be "not near residential homes" anywhere in Somerville, unless you are Good Time Emporium in Assembly Square. Anyone remember the predecessor to Orleans, which was called the Aquarium? It shared a party wall with a residential condo, and the owner of that condo pretty much had to move out until the city finally forced the Aquarium's closure. The loud bands or dj music made it impossible for her to sleep.

Yes for later bars

Ok, I have been living in Somerville for three years so I guess I don't know what it was like before. However, I went to college at RPI in Troy NY, a city whose bars tend to be open till 4 to 5 am. I worked in the bars in that city back then and I saw more problems from parties then bars open late. I personally feel that things are safer and better when people are in bars partying. The only other option for young people is to go to a bar and then an after hours party. I have seen many after hours parties around Union Square and these parties tend to get out of control. I think that bars can control crowds since they have hired staff and can train bartenders to cut off rude customers not to mention a police officer can be posted in or out of the bar to regulate drunken fools. Just my two cents, why can't people enjoy themselves on weekends, better in a controlled environment then an out of control house party.

Credit where credit is due

What is with the Davis Square crowd? They really think that they are better than the rest of us. If bars in Teele, Magoun & Union Squares are allowed to stay open until 2am, then the bars in Davis Square should too. These moonbats who are complaining should remember what businesses like the Burren and the Joshua Tree have done for their Davis Square. You want it both ways. I say, if you can't put up with a a little noise, move to Vermont.


Ron Newman: I agree. Store 24, as the name implies, should be open 24x7. I think if you are willing to move into an apartment/condo that sits above a business, you should have to deal with the noise. If you don't want the noise, don't move there.

Credit where credit is due: I agree with you, and I'm a Davis Square resident. I live here, because it is the right balance of amenities and noise for me. Some people can take more noise and live in Boston, others prefer less and live farther out in the suburbs. But don't move somewhere and then complain about the existing noise level.

Personally, I think that businesses should be allowed to stay open as long as their business model will support. If they can make money staying open til 2, 3, 4am, then let them. I would appreciate the convenience of things being open 24x7 if they would.

I moved here 2 years ago from a small town in another state, and I was surprised when I arrived how early things close here. Even in Boston things close earlier than they did in the small town I came from. I expected that a bigger city would have more things open later. I thought it was normal for ALL grocery stores to be open 24x7, ALL corner/convenience stores to be open 24x7, ALL gas stations to be open 24x7, gyms to be open til midnight, bars to be open until 1-3am, diners open 24x7 (or at least til 2am), malls and department stores to be open til 10-11pm (even on weekdays). Let's just say I was in shock when I came here. It's hard to find a place to eat after 10pm, even on a Fri/Sat night!

People, come on, the world is not going to go to hell if things stay open late.

F. Mark

I'm not against the 2am closing --per se-- I just think the Joshua Tree needs to earn it a bit and also provide services and assurances for it.

Let's be honest, that place isn't Red Bones. JTree's owners no bastions of neighborliness in the area. They have never been responsive to issues with keeping noise down, providing front and rear door security or ensuring that their delivery trucks don't cause havoc on the side streets. If they want the right to stay open later --then they better figure out how to give back and mind their clientele, delivery guys, etc a bit better. They should be paying for the extra security, foot patrols, etc --not the rest of the town's taxpayers. If they do that --give them the license.


I'm fully supportive of the 2 AM license for the Joshua Tree. We need more options locally that stay open late.

Yuppie Scum

I'm glad to see some sensible comments on this site for once. Staying open later will boost the economy. Note as well that there is a new bar open till 2 in Porter (tavern on the square) as well, and I can vouch that it hasn't led to the wholesale destruction of porter square.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Most Recent Photos

  • Danehy_Park_Family_Day
  • Bloco
  • 3517a
  • Web_toon_7_21_10
  • Prospect hill
  • Web_toon_7_14_10
  • 3224a
  • Art1(2)
  • Art5
  • Art10(2)
  • Union_square_flood
  • Flood_pic_(bridge_1)