Historic Elk Grove Bar Will Stay Open

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ELK GROVE -- The building housing Bob's Club seems unremarkable but it is the oldest building in Old Town Elk Grove.

It was built in 1876 and once housed the Elk Grove Hotel.

The bar is a throwback to neighborhood saloons, a homey place where everyone gets a welcome.

Bob's Club takes on the character of its owner, Allan Veto, who has run it since the early '90s and is a community booster and supporter.

"Simple hospitality," Veto told FOX40. "We want to greet you with a napkin and smile. We want to introduce you to people on either side of you."

But that kind of warm welcome was not always present at the bar.

"It used to be a place you really didn't want to go," said patron Chad Parsley.

Parsley is a regular who bought his first legal drink at Bob's Club when he turned 21 some 40 years ago. Gone are the rowdy, rough characters of his youth.

Now he marvels at the diversity of customers who come in to have a good time in a safe place.

"You can't come here and not have a good time unless you just don't want to," he said.

But a few months ago, Veto was facing eviction as the building owner looked for a new tenant.

"I was worried about my job," Veto said. "My customers and the community were worried about losing a place that's been around a lot longer than me."

City officials felt that Bob's Club should be a part of their vision for an Old Town entertainment district and allowed him to move his bar to another historic building across the street.

Then, in a turn of events, he was able to buy the Bob's Club building.

He still intends to open a microbrewery and wine bar across the way with the Bob's Club sensibility geared to a different clientele.

Mark Hutchinson owns a jewelry store down the street and trusts Veto to meet high standards or Old Town.

"People run a clean legit establishment, which he does in spades," Hutchinson said.

Despite his new venture across the street, Veto says there's no way he's going to abandon Bob's Club.

"I'm grateful about this whole thing because I get to spend the rest of my years working right here doing what I love to do," he said.

No doubt Bob's Club regulars feel the same way.

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