Treasures of the Valley » Mike Lawler

Augie’s Tavern Memories


The Crescenta Valley has had its fair share of little neighborhood bars, sometimes jokingly referred to as “dive bars.” Barru, My Place, Intermezzo, Up the Hill, Village Pub, Avignone’s … the list goes on and on. Augie’s Tavern was one of these. It was located at 3352 Foothill Blvd., on the southeast corner of Foothill and New York Avenue (CHurchill 8-9948). It was an odd little building, a former real estate office. An old phone booth graced one corner of a tiny parking lot, and an advertising billboard graced the roof. It seems to have opened in the early 1950s, and closed before 1980. A used car lot took its place.

Mike Lawler is the former
president of the Historical
Society of the Crescenta Valley
and loves local history.
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I don’t have a definitive history of the place, but I was able to collect several Facebook posts containing memories of Augie’s. Hopefully you’ll enjoy these (anonymous) comments:

“I believe Ollie Dawe was the last owner of it and died of a heart attack – both his daughters (Dru and Dale) were friends of ours. In fact, Dru Dawe dated my brother Mark for a while (‘Bet my money on a bob tailed horse – Dru Dawe, Dru Dawe’). Often La Crescenta Gas Company employees would patronize after work. Had just one pool table as I recall. Remember seeing a jar of pickled pig’s feet on the bar. Could be wrong, but think it was strictly a beer bar.”

“Great little beer bar, and pool table. Dated the bartender’s ex-girlfriend and took her there. Next thing I know they are rolling around on the pool table making out and I was watching Hogan’s Heroes. ‘I know nothing!’”

“At one time my brother and his friend were ‘promoters’ for Augie’s and convinced all the cute girls in town to drive around with a ‘Meet me at Augie’s’ bumper sticker on their car. It seemed to work and business improved!”

“I remember Augie’s as a teenager. When I was finally 21, I went in there – once. LOL!”

“I was a regular since I was 18! Shhhhh … don’t tell anyone!”

“During the mid-1950s there was a very popular burger stand, Geno’s, just across from Augie’s on the north side of Foothill. During slow parts of the day, Geno, the owner, would recruit one of us teenagers to watch the place while he hopped across the street to soak up a couple of cool ones at Augie’s. Augie’s had at least one very good customer.”

“Walking home from Clark Junior High, my friend would open the door and yell, ‘Drunks!’ As 12 year olds we thought it quite funny and actually the patrons inside did, too.”

“A lot of my family members played on their pool leagues. Being younger, I was stuck at home babysitting all their kids.”

“My mom loved their pickled pig’s feet.”

“We’d stop there on my way home from Clark Junior High. We’d get a bottle of coke and a beef stick and continue down the hill snacking after school.”

“Played pool tournaments there before I was even 21. Dick was the owner. I remember he had a silver ‘vette’. Loved that place.”

“They had a good baseball team and cold beer.”

“Loved Augie’s! Had the best times with knowing everyone! My bro John, sister Tanya and I all hung out there. Paula was bartending.”

“Augie’s was a standing joke in my house. We always said, ‘Where’s Dad? Down at Augie’s?’ My dad was a teetotaler and that’s the last place he’d be!”

“John and Gloria sold the bar to another couple. I forgot the couple’s name. The guy worked at the Foothill Datsun next door.”

“Went there a few times, also the bowling alley.”

“My ex spent lots of time there drinking and playing pool with his buddy Dave. It was a dive!”

“I used to play guitar there every week or two back around 1970 or so. Great times and memories about that cool little bar!”

“Augie’s! I spent a lot of time and money there! And don’t forget ‘The Seahorse’ up Foothill near Lowell!”

“My dad used to go there every Saturday afternoon. When we asked where he was going, he told us he was going crazy.”