Johnetta's Pub closing this weekend, holding farewell show

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- A beloved bar is serving up drinks and live music for the last time.

Johnetta's Pub has been serving the area over the course of more than a decade, but the woman behind it, Johnetta Pryor, has been in the music and bar business for 40 years.

Weekend after weekend, her pub has hosted a slew of live acts, (including Grammy winners) karaoke, and more, while providing a comfortable place for customers that she viewed as her family.

Johnetta wasn't planning on selling the bar that she has run for over a decade until she got an offer that just made sense less than two weeks ago.

"Any business does -- they say the money's right, you go, or if the time's right, you go, but he got me at the right time," she said. "I think it was meant to be. A lot of things have happened. I've been doing this a long time."

"It is going to be pretty surreal to not be able to stop by and say hello -- sit down and have a drink or a Coke or whatever it might be," said Alan Simpson, of the band, Bueler's Day Off, "But, you know -- a little bit of sad, but I'm so excited for her."

She says what has given her the most pride throughout her time in the industry was her desire to foster an establishment that kept people safe, giving rides home to anyone who needed it.

"These are my friends, they ain't just customers," Johnetta said.

The bar was a place to poke fun, talk about politics and tease each other.

"For 40 years, everybody knows, 'Oh she's a Democrat.' But all my customers are Republicans. So we just have a good old time. I let them rag me, and we just go about our day," she said. "I just wanted everybody to feel like, when they come through the doors, they're walking in their living room."

On their last weekend, true to form, Johnetta's Pub will be filled with music, starting with a live band on Friday night.

"It's a great send-off for her, and it's time for her to take a break, and we're just thrilled to be here," said Simpson.

As far as her plans going forward, Johnetta said she knows she'll be spending some more quality time with her new grandson.

"I'm happy; he's red-headed. I couldn't be any happier," she laughed. "He's red-headed, got brown eyes, and he knows all my secrets."

She also says she knows she'll be working with music again in the future.

"You know, people are like -- 'Isn't it so sad?' And I'm really not going to be that way. I'm happy for Johnetta," said Simpson. "It's bittersweet, but it's more sweet than bitter."

Bueler's Day Off is set to perform at Johnetta's on Friday, April 12, 2019, starting at 9 p.m. On Saturday, April 13, 2019, they'll have a final karaoke night.

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