Fighting Rumors: Callihan’s American Pub Is “Still alive and well”

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Callihan’s American Pub is not closed, has not been closed and will not be closed anytime soon – unless you get there after normal business hours.

“I’m here to stay man. January is my 10 year anniversary here – January 24,” said owner Tal Callihan.

Callihan said he has been quiet about misinformation circulating about the restaurant and bar for months, but recently realized he needed to speak up “to combat the rumors that have circulated throughout the Tri-State and our community that Callihan’s has closed and the (Kyova) mall is closing. None of that’s true. The mall is not closing and Callihan’s is not closing.”

Citing the popularity of the nearby Rural King store as well as the  Kyova-10 movie cinema, Callihan said Kyova Mall is actually preparing big things in the days ahead.

“I can’t talk about what’s in the works, but I assure you there’s good things coming to Kyova Mall,” Callihan said, adding “We just want to put an end to the rumors.”

False reports about Callihan’s American Pub are personally and professionally troubling for Callihan, who is a true hands-on owner.

“I’ve worked seven days a week for 10 years,” he said, shaking his head slightly as he discussed plans for the future including new drinks and entrees as well as the addition of works by local artists as well as upcoming performances by outstanding musicians.

“And we still do more Happy Hour business than anybody,” he added with a short chuckle.

Steak burgers, with patties ground in-house daily, have been a big hit with customers in recent months, Callihan said.

“We have a variety of steak burgers and I’m coming up with more everyday. We have fun with food – always have!” he said, later adding “We make a pretty good pizza too.”

“Did he even mention the ribs?” asked Dave Daugherty, Callihan’s staff member and mascot. “Our ribs are the best in the Tri-State. We get orders for like 15 racks at a time.”

For many, Callihan’s American Pub has been the place to experience live music performed by musicians ranging from first-timers to veteran artists. Weekly “open mic” events allow an opportunity for anyone with a song to sing to share the spotlight, and weekend shows bring professional entertainers from the region and the road.

“We’ve had bluegrass, country, rock, R&B, blues … Music. If it’s good, it’s good. I love it all,” Callihan said, recalling past performances by notable names including Dean Dillon, Rick Huckaby, Ward Davis, Crystal Shawanda & DeWayne Strobel, Larry Cordle and others, as well as more recent shows by up and coming bands such as Joslyn & The Sweet Compression.

A “slam poetry” event was recently added to the calendar of events, he said, adding Blind Joe from The Voice is scheduled to perform in January.

Callihan said he has been able to track a reduction in daily business as a result of the closure rumors, although he hopes great food and friendly service, along with the added value of live musical entertainment “at least three nights a week,” will correct the course.

With a grin, he hints that he has faith in the future of Callihan’s American Pub.

“You never can tell. I may open up another one.”

Callihan’s American Pub, which also offers on and off-site catering, is open  from 11 a.m. until 10:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 until 11 Friday and Saturday, and from noon to 8 p.m. Sunday. For more information, visit the Callihan’s American Pub and Callihan’s Acoustic Jam pages on Facebook, or call (606) 585-0586.

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Story and Photos by TIM PRESTON

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