Big H’s 40th birthday weekend: Mays Bar!

Mays Bar

Part 2: Our adventure for Bloody Mary’s

Photos of the history of Mays Bar

Sunday Bloody Mary’s is tradition!

So I LOVE a good Bloody Mary. The problem is they do a number on my stomach so I have to live through H. I take a sip of his and have a cocktail. It’s just better that away. Sunday morning of our weekend adventure the forecast was for 81 and sunny. It was almost unreal. Sunday the September 19th, sunny, 81 and we were in Wisconsin’s Northwoods, parked on a lake for 3 days = heaven!

The only thing we were missing after breakfast was a good Bloody Mary. So off we went, to explore and find one.

Mays bar in Crandon, WI

Hanging out in Mays Bar

I must admit it was tough. We got up early so we left around 9:00am. Not much is open at that time and also off season. We ended up in Crandon, WI to find everything closed or not up our alley. So H’s sister Melanie, found a small spot just outside of town. Little did we know we were about to find the gem of a lifetime, and meet the most amazing siblings ever.

Bonnie and Bill the last of 9 siblings!

Bonnie and Bill, the owner’s, are the children of the family that built the place in the late 30’s. It’s an incredible story. When you walk into Mays Bar you feel like you walked back in time. Its quaint, clean, simple and a pure gem.

Bonnie was bartending, and of course met us with a huge smile as Melanie set Kellen right on the bar, and asked us how she could help us. We all ordered a drink and began learning the story of Mays Bar and talking about her family.

So much history!

Back Bar

I asked Bonnie and Bill if I could write about them and take some pictures. There is something about history and a family story that gets me excited. They had nine siblings and they are the last two. There used to be gas pumps also and the entire family helped.

We dished about recipes, canning pickles and pears, and learned about Bill’s illness, and why they were selling the place. The history is incredible.

Even the barstools are original. Just reupholstered to keep them up to date. The bathroom was spotless and Bonnie’s smile and love of her job and her family intoxicating.

Mays Bar in Crandon, WI is for sale!

Charlie and Ethel Mays

I love the old stories of people who settled here and made it their home. The old buildings with so much history you want to bit into the wood to feel the connection. The thought of the hours she has spent behind that bar entertaining vacationers or people just in to talk and reminisce.

There is a special type of person who gives their life to the public. Who puts on a smile every day to make other’s feel good, and just has pleasant conversation to perk you up after a long day. Who spends their downtime making food for their family and sharing family recipes.

Paper Clipping

As I said they are selling. There is a small building next door that could house, home decor seasonally, canned goods and fresh produce, be a small general store. If you added a kitchen and served just a few options, it’s right on the trail system you could draw from that also. I looked at my husband and said……”we should buy it!” It almost seemed like we stopped for a reason, that it was fate.


Mays Bar has a lot of potential for a thriving business!

I can see so many possibilities to turn it into a thriving business that caters to the tourist, and also to the Crandon area. There aren’t many people around like Bonnie and Bill. Who have dedicated their entire life to ONE business.

Memories are everywhere!

Bonnie and Bill Mays

I can’t imagine how they will feel when they lock the door for the last time. Whoever buys the place his big shoes to fill, and they better have one big smile to add. Cause I’m pretty sure Bonnie’s got you beat already!

Part 1 | Part 2


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Big H’s 40th birthday weekend: Mays Bar!

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