Beloved South Portland Bar The Griffin Club In Danger Of Being “Redeveloped”
For almost half a century, the Griffin Club has been a SoPo staple but the current owner says that could all be coming to an end soon.
There aren't many places left standing in Portland or South Portland quite like the Griffin Club. There won't be much argument that it looks and feels old, but that is part of makes the Griffin Club so endearing to patrons. It's not done up, drinks don't cost 10 bucks and it feels like the kind of place other generations of your family could sit and drink at. But according to the Bangor Daily News, that may all be coming to an end soon.
That's because the building that has housed the Griffin Club for some 49 years and change, is officially up for sale. Realtor.com has the building listed at nearly $600,000 but is touting it as a building that can be redeveloped in the burgeoning Knightville neighborhood of South Portland. That has left the current Griffin Club owner, Scott Parker, believing it's only a matter of time before he'll have to shut the doors for good.
"If it gets sold, it means I'm outta here," Parker told the BDN, "some out-of-stater is going to come in knocking it down, putting up a bunch of condos." Parker isn't off base in thinking that, redevelopment of old building on prime oceanfront property has become an all too common thing in the Portland area the past few years.
The history of the Griffin Club is rich. It got its name from its original owner, Eddie Griffin who was a sports promoter. The bar welcomed some of New England's most storied sports legends in for a drink, including Ted Williams. For now, the Griffin Club will remain operating like nothing is going on, with Parker quietly continuing to look for a contingency plan in the event the building is sold. If it's torn down, South Portland will lose a huge piece of its storytelling past....whether it believes it or not.