The first time my husband Vince visited Sisti’s Tavern in Colver, PA he came home sweating Jim Beam.
We were seniors in college then, and I had brought him east to meet my grandparents, the formidable Jay and Micky Kostelnik. They greeted us from their front porch and fed us an enormous meal of veal cutlets, halubki, and potato salad.
Then, as a rite of passage, Pap took Vince for a ride up 20 Row and through Colver to Sisti’s Tavern. Grandma and I stayed home, sipping tea and chatting back in her kitchen.
Vince and Pap weren’t gone long, but, when they returned, both of them needed a nap and I rolled my eyes at the familiar scene.
The first time Pap brought my sister in-law Robin to Sisti’s, she ended up standing on the bar and telling jokes to the regulars. Pap and Robin shared a bond and a unique appreciation for pickled eggs.
Two years ago, when my family came back to Colver for my dad’s golden football ceremony, we all headed to Sisti’s and I got a big kick out of my mom and her sister, the elegant Aunt Doris, hoisting a glass there.
Then 91-years old, Lido was there behind the bar, just like he had been all through our childhood. He and Marge have been running Sisti’s for as long as anyone can remember.
But, there’s a last call for every bar, even Sisti’s. And, last night, Sisti’s finally closed its doors.
Here’s to Marge, Lido and Sisti’s on the first morning of a well-deserved retirement. You soothed broken hearts, celebrated all sorts of milestones, quenched a lot of miner’s thirsts, coaxed a ton of laughter, and doled out pretzels and lollipops.
Nostrovia, friends. Thanks for the memories.
P.S. You can read more about Sisti’s and Colver in this excellent post I happily stumbled upon last night.