Craig community welcome to free Christmas dinner at Mathers’ Bar | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig community welcome to free Christmas dinner at Mathers’ Bar

Craig Daily Press Staff Report

Mathers' Bar, 420 Yampa Ave., will be open to anyone and everyone on Christmas day for a free holiday meal.

A holiday tradition that has lasted for decades continues this Sunday.

Mathers' Bar invites anyone and everyone in Craig and Moffat County and beyond to its annual Christmas Day dinner. The meal is free and runs from 2 to 9 p.m. at the downtown tavern at 420 Yampa Ave.

The yearly feast has been going for about 64 years, owner Tom Mathers said.

It began in the 1950s with an out-of-town family passing through Craig Christmas Day, unable to find a place to eat. The local watering hole happened to be open to customers, and they came in to try to find some food.

Though the Mathers family didn't have any edibles handy, Tom's father, Pete, thought it might not be a bad idea the following year.

"My dad said we'll have to make sure that doesn't happen again," Tom said.

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Pete kept the Christmas dinner going for 20 years, while Tom has offered it for 44 years alongside his brother and co-owner, Mike.

On the menu are entrees including hams and five 20-pound turkeys, as well as many donated items from local people and businesses, such as pies from Village Inn.

Carelli's owner Brett Etzler said he will send over several items, possibly prime rib or other meats.

"It seems like a great idea to me, this is the first year we've done this," Etzler said, adding he hopes to stop by for the feast.

Tom Mathers added that seniors will be receiving transportation to come by the bar.

Patrons can also bring a covered dish to contribute but will not be turned away if they show up empty-handed.

"Everyone's welcome for a good Christmas dinner," he said.

For more information, call 970-824-9946.