West Side Grocery

The building that now houses the Tides Tavern was built by Axel Uddenburg in 1910 and served the area as a general store. Located next to the "People's Dock", the town's only public ferry landing, it was called the West Side Mercantile. The ferry dock provided a steady stream of customers through the first half-century. With the end of prohibition in the 1930s, a tavern was added, and a tradition of good times began. Beer was sold for 10 cents a glass, and 20 cents a bottle. The tavern never made much money, but no one cared.

Three Fingered Jack

 

 

Through the years, the building has seen a number of colorful owners, not the least of which was "Three Fingered Jack," a Jerry Garcia look-alike whose tenor voice resonated across the dance floor on Friday and Saturday nights in the late 60s and early 70s.

 

 

 

Peter StanleyIn 1973, current owner Peter Stanley bought the run-down, but well-known tavern, and began a two-month re-construction project which culminated in the memorable opening of The Tides on the weekend of "Harbor Holidays." Soon after, Stanley opened an enlarged kitchen, and a tradition of great tavern food had begun. Since then, the food has expanded to healthy portions of specially made pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, chili, clam chowder, great home-made soups, and the Tides' famous fish and chips. Through several renovations, The Tides traditions remain intact... live music can still occasionally be heard on weekends... original signs, painted by Gig Harbor painter Toby Reid, add to the nostalgia of the tavern... and the walls remain covered with snapshots sent in by patrons who have donned their Tides T-shirts around the globe. Since 1973, The Tides Tavern has been a place to celebrate the bond of friendship, a place for us to gather, a place for old friends to re-unite and even a place to fall in love. Today, vestiges of the building's historic past, when groceries and fishing supplies were loaded onto horse-drawn carts, are still visible to those who know where to look. Perhaps the secret of The Tides lies in the comfort it affords people; a feeling that, while it may change with the passage of time, it will always be there.