Bill Kipper has been working at Steamboat Ski and Bike Kare for well over 10 years, and his been living in Steamboat for much longer. He is originally from Kansas and has a lot of great stories to tell. This post is dedicated to one short story that he recently shared with me. Enjoy! and if you like the story and want to hear more from Bill please let us know in the comments! We are still trying to figure out what different things to blog about, so any and all feedback is welcome!
There is a bar/café in Yampa, Co called “The Antlers”. It’s been there forever. It is the most iconic place in Yampa and probably this whole part of the state. It was for years run by a guy named Mike. Mike had owned the Antlers since the 1920’s and was known far and wide for his eccentric and colorful personality, but I didn’t know that at the time.
One day, in the early 1990’s I had been hiking up around Stillwater reservoir in the Flat Tops Wilderness. After a long day on the trail I decided that a beer was in order and since I had to pass right by the Antlers, plus having never been in there, it seemed the place to be. I walked in to a dark and very quiet bar (think saloon in just about any western movie). Deserted except for an little old man with his back to me sweeping the hardwood floor. I stood in the doorway for a moment before asking, “Are you open”?. The old man, Mike, spins around and says, “How did you get in here”? in a none too friendly voice. I replied, “The front door is open”. To which he answered, “Well then, I guess I’m open”. Okaaay, that’s different. Anyway, I sit at the bar and Mike asks, ” What’ll you have”?. The rest of the conversation goes like this: “I’ll have a beer. What do you have”?. ” Coors and Henry Weinhard’s”. “I’ll have a Coors”. “No, you want a Henry’s”. “No, I’ll have a Coors”. “No, you want a Henry’s”. “I’d really rather have a Coors”. “No, you’ll have a Henry’s”. “Ok, I’ll have a Henry’s”. I then sat there for about two hours, the only one in the place, while Mike regaled me with great story after story about the place. It was very entertaining with lots of laughs. Now the story behind the beer is this: Seems Henry Weinhards had filmed a commercial there in the mid 80’s and Mike was very proud of this fact. And THAT is why I had a Henry’s.