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Closing Time

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Duffy's Shamrock Bar served the first beer of its last day at 6:10 a.m today. Technically, that was fifty minutes before it was legal to do so -- but what's the state going to do, shut down this 56-year-old institution a few hours early?

And technically, Duffy's doesn't -- didn't -- even open until 6:30. But by six this morning, people were waiting to go inside for their last breakfast, their last cup of coffee and yes, their first beer of the last day.

Make that next-to-last-day, because Duffy's will actually stay open for the first two hours of tomorrow. The beers and the stories will keep flowing until 2 a.m., and then the Lombardi brothers will turn off the lights and lock the doors on the watering hole they moved into this building on Court Place more than thirty years ago. For years, the Lombardis had rejected offers to sell the building, but finally, finally, they surrendered to time and inevitability. Sixteen hours from now, they'll serve their last beer of their last day.

And the rest is history. -- Patricia Calhoun

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.