New Leadership at The Pub
By Steven O. Evans, PhD
The Pub is in the heart of Wilton Manors and sets itself apart not only as a community bar, but also one that is popular with our LGBTQA+ travelers. Not just a place where everybody knows your name, the Pub offers up great entertainment from our local drag queens like Starlet Sky and Nancy Ross, and out of towners like Ada Vox, the Synergy Twins, and Helena Handbasket. They also have their yummy breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus. Recently, Chris Lodge took over as General Manager. I sat down with Chris to chat about the Pub and get to know him a little bit better.
Steven O. Evans: How did you get started with the Pub?
Chris Lodge: I started bartending here a few years ago. And the manager position opened. My title is General Manager. My focus is on overseeing the entire bar, but I also focus on the marketing and advertising. We have so many weekly events going on here, that getting the word out is very important. And actually, it’s very fun. We have such a great crowd that comes here. We focus on being a community bar.
SOE: What sets the Pub apart from other clubs in South Florida?
CL: Our team is really amazing. They all focus on customer service. We don’t just serve drinks. We care about each other and our customers. It’s not just work, but we have fun at what we do.
Our shows also set us apart. We have some of the best drag shows in town. We are setting the bar (pun intended) for a new standard of entertainment and customer service. Our talent really helps to bring in the people. Our other talent is worth coming to see. It’s not just status quo.
We also work a lot with the non-profit organizations in town. We recently hosted the Underwear Auction for the Pet Project. I got to be one of the participants. Not only was it a lot of fun to be on stage, but also it was the biggest event they have ever had. It was great to be a part of this group and event. And funny to think that my underwear was sold to help pets.
SOE: What kinds of things do you like to do in your free time when you’re not at the Pub?
CL: I’m 100% avid boater and I love being out on the water. My boyfriend and I love to go out on our boat whenever we get the chance. Living in South Florida gives us that unique opportunity to fish, scuba dive, relax, and even take the boat to the Bahamas when we get the chance.
I am also an entrepreneur, part owner of Axelband Accessories LLC, www.AXBgear.com. It’s our own unique design in which bartenders can wear a bottle opener on their arm with a magnet along with a flashlight/stylus/pen. They can keep all their most important tools accessible at all times, increasing speed of service. We currently have it patented and will be launching a national campaign. There are some big things to come, and I can’t yet disclose what they are, but be on the lookout for “Bar Rescue.”
In my previous life, I was an EMT for 10 years and worked in an ambulance. I provided emergency care and responded to 911 calls. I was the guy that would give you CPR.
SOE: What’s your background?
CL: I grew up on a farm in southern New Jersey. We had an orchard, pigs, cows, sheep, and chickens on the farm. I loved making the apple cider every fall and collecting the eggs on the farm. It was a great way way to grow up.
So, stop by the Pub for a bite to eat, a drink, or a show. You won’t be disappointed. The Pub is located at 2283 Wilton Drive, Wilton Manors, FL 33305. Visit www.ThePubWM.com for more information.