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Another round: George’s Encore opening Feb. 20 in Racine

From The Journal

RACINE — After George’s Tavern, a staple in Racine’s music community for nearly 80 years, closed Dec. 24, it was clear that the people wanted more — an encore, perhaps.

Caleb Robinson says he plans to deliver just that with George’s Encore, opening Feb. 20 at 1201 N. Main St.

George the Penguin, a 6-foot-tall, 30-pound metal sculpture, will greet patrons again when George's Encore opens Feb. 20 at the former George’s Tavern.

Robinson said he wants to embrace the history of George’s Tavern and build upon the established community atmosphere.

A Racine native, Robinson was a patron of George’s Tavern and has known the previous proprietors, Gary, Sherry and Michael from the Gibson family, for years.

A long-time entrepreneur, Robinson has unique experience in both the live music and restaurant industries.

He celebrated his 12th season at Smoke’d On the Water, 3 Fifth St., this past summer.

The seasonal restaurant, open Memorial Day through Labor Day near the Pershing Park Boat Launch, features live music with karaoke on Thursdays, Open Jams on Fridays, two bands on Saturdays and one band on Sundays.

Before Smoke’d On the Water, Robinson ran Top Dog Hot Dogs, a mobile food stand usually set up on Monument Square.

George's Tavern, at the corner of Main and Hamilton streets, closed in December, but the Racine staple is set to reopen Feb. 20 as George's Encore under the ownership of Caleb Robinson.

Honoring George’s Tavern

The well-loved events from George’s Tavern like Open Jam Nights, Evening of Storytelling and Tom & Jerry cocktails on Thanksgiving morning will live on at George’s Encore, Robinson said.

He also plans to continue previous fundraising partnerships, such as working with Thoughts for Food.

George’s Encore will offer its venue space for the fundraiser benefitting Racine County Food Bank at 6 p.m. Saturday, March 2.

When Gary Gibson ran the kitchen at George’s Tavern, patrons valued his home-cooked meals, like the chili and soups. Robinson said George’s Encore will share this same commitment to home-cooked food.

Robinson said Jeremy Gibson, who will be running the kitchen and is not related to the tavern’s original Gibson family, and Jenni Sailor, who will run the bar, will help make the “Food, Fun & Friends” values the tavern was built on possible at the next installment of George’s.