The Ace-Hi Tavern, Golden's lovable s*#thole, gets a facelift

For 130 years, the town of Golden has been drinking at 1216 Washington Avenue. For the past 60, they've been calling it the Ace-Hi Tavern. For bartendress Wanda, regulars Ed and Mikey, and a cast of characters large enough to spoof a Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band poster eight or nine times over, this diamond in the dive-bar rough has been like a second home.

But it's time to remodel.

Already Complete: While I was sleeping one off, apparently, the Ace started accepting credit cards. What the fuck, right? What's next? HD flat screens? Auto-flush? Nope. A fancy new baking stone, which I watched Wanda place into the middle rack of the three-tiered pizza oven one morning last week.

With small Tombstone pies at $6 (and full-size at $8), I decided to pop that cherry at, oh, 9:15 a.m. And while Wanda was disappointed with the results - she plans to preheat the stone next time for crispier crust - I gobbled up the whole goddamn thing and washed it down with a $1.50 Bud draught. Delicious.

Works in Progress: Any day now, a speed rail's going in below the gun for faster access to the bar's most popular poisons. With this addition will come deeper countertops and a possible return to hanging pitchers (which allegedly snagged many a watering-hole health violation back when cigarette smoke would turn 'em yellow). I get how efficient serving methods = faster service = increased intoxication, but how am I supposed to get back to Denver now?

The remodel's royal flush, though, is the eventual plan to replace the angled wooden entranceway with glass doors. Why glass doors? According to the 8 a.m. regulars:

"So people don't walk by and assume this place is just a dingy shithole."

"But this place is a dingy shithole!"

"Not for long. Going to be bright as shit in here with them new doors."

"At least we'll be able to see the parades go by."

(All together) "Hooray!"

Just for the record: The Ace-Hi ain't no shithole. And I wasn't eavesdropping. But kind of I was.

Good luck with the upgrade, Ace.