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Dear Bully’s
Nancy Fisher | 24th Street

Photo Tom Nelson.
Click to enlarge.

We will miss you. Even though our eyes dilated to the size of dimes every time we passed from the sunlight through your doorway, you continued to serve us prime rib and Bully’s Burgers until the day your lights went from dimmed to extinguished.
You had free parking, but phone-booth-sized bathrooms. Your carpeting scared us, so we appreciated your “romantic” lighting. And although you became a dive bar to many in your dotage, those who remember your “prime,” so to speak, will always look back with reverence.

“In 1969, Richard and I came to Del Mar to visit race friends who rented for the season,” says long-time resident Deborah Logiurato. “It was my first time in Del Mar, but Richard had been coming for years. The guys would go to the races and, when they returned, we would all go to Bully’s for prime rib! We’d take up the whole bar, including the round lower part, and the tables to the left. What great times, laughing and telling race stories. They were kind of like ‘fish stories,’ always about the one that got away! The bar was alive with people from all different places, and you never knew who you’d meet – movie directors, producers, actors, you name it.”

Bill Michalsky, another long-time local, remembers what you were like before the no-smoking policy. “The smoke level would come down to a person’s waist. I used to hang my coats in fresh air when I got home. Many of us would go there for birthdays – typically guys.”

Ninety-nine-year-old Rachel Reed, a Del Mar resident since1958, fondly remembers when you had prime rib bones on the menu. “The slices of prime rib were so huge they fell off the sides of the plates, so there was still quite a bit of meat on the bones. We’d order the bones, have a great meal, and then bring the bare bones home to our dog, Lion.”

So rest in peace Bully’s, and remember these last words from your friend Deborah Logiurato. “As with every classic in our lives it’s hard to say goodbye, but, as my dad has always said, ‘nothing ever dies as long as its stories are told.’ That is immortality!”



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