The Ritz’s last call party this Saturday, June 7, will celebrate the sale of the iconic bar on Circuit Avenue in Oak Bluffs. Musicians will drop in to play throughout the day, starting at 3 pm. There will be finger food, tee-shirts for sale, historic videos, and a photo board documenting the bar’s history.
Manager and part owner Janet King said patrons of the bar are expected from as far away as New Jersey.
“Come by to hear the music, eat, and share stories,” she said in a telephone interview on Tuesday.
The last Ritz final call party, in 2008, was followed by a re-opening party when the prospective owner failed to come up with the cash at the closing.
Ms. King, who did not want to make the name of the new owner public, said she and her sister Chrissy, who also works at the bar, expect this sale to go through. “We are looking forward to trying something new after the final papers are signed on June 23,” she said. They have a purchase and sale agreement and a deposit in hand.
Ms. King said the new owner, a Vineyard homeowner from Texas, is a Ritz fan and plans to maintain the bar as a venue for music. She said he will re-open the kitchen. “He likes the Ritz; he likes the local aspect of it,” she said. “He plans to keep the music going, which is great for me. That’s one of the things I was worried about.” She said he will close the bar after the closing for cleaning and painting and will reopen by July 4.
The Ritz was purchased by Ms. King’s parents in 1967. Ownership was transferred to a trust for Ms. King, her three sisters, and her brother when her mother died.
“I want to get out,” Ms. King said. “I don’t want to be up until 2 o’clock in the morning anymore. I have worked here for more than 30 years. That’s enough for me. I am too young to retire and I can’t sit down for too long so I will be looking for other things to do.”
Last Call Party at The Ritz, Saturday, June 7, 3 pm until close, The Ritz, Oak Bluffs.