Remodeling begins at Learís Pub and Grill

Written by Katy Nesbitt, The Observer June 19, 2013 01:56 pm

ENTERPRISE — Sometimes you got to break some eggs to make an omelet. At Lear’s Main Street Pub and Grill, renovations are underway, both structurally and aesthetically.

A weak spot in the floor behind the bar led to a much bigger project. A big chunk of the floor was removed, exposing joists and dirt that hadn’t seen the light of day since 1896. Owner Steve Lear said the pub is the oldest building on Main Street, and he and his wife, Cathie, are not just fixing an area worn out with age, but are renovating the front of the pub, the barbershop next door, and the “grill” or adjacent dining area where music shows such as Wallowa Valley Music Alliance’s Tunesmith are held.

Along with all new flooring support and hardwood floor, the pub is getting new lighting and a new ceiling, said Steve Lear. Next comes the exterior.

“We hired some folks to come out and redo the front of the restaurant, barber shop, and Bowlby Building (where the grill is) to restore the windows and woodwork,” said Lear. “Next week, Mountain View Glass will be here.”

Lear said the projects should wrap up by mid-July. Meanwhile they are still serving breakfast, lunch and dinner on the grill side. Improvements for that room have already begun with a new sound system installed last month and now Lear said he is installing a “smart” TV for video conferencing to encourage more business meetings. He also wants to show old time movies on the 70-inch screen.

Lear said people have stopped by to inquire about the work and more importantly, the menu, which changes daily.

“I’ve been shocked by the reception. We’ve had a lot of new people stop by that have never been in the restaurant,” he said.