HARRISON, Maine — A historic tavern that was once a playhouse, roller-skating rink, school gymnasium and American Legion Hall went on sale this week for $849,900.
The only restaurant in downtown Harrison, Old Mill Tavern serves locals and visitors alike in this southwestern Maine resort town of 2,500 people. In its various iterations, the building remains the center of activity in the town.
The current building, which once housed several restaurants, was built in 1923, making it one of the oldest restaurants in Maine. Eastport’s Waco Diner, built in 1924, is the oldest restaurant in the state, Moody’s Diner in Waldboro, Palace Diner in Bidford, and Maine’s Tavern in Bangor are all his 1920s-built buildings. is in
Olde Mill Tavern co-owner Chris Searles has vowed that the restaurant won’t close, but will be taken over by new owners who hope to preserve its aesthetics.
“Business is doing incredibly well,” said Searles, who owns the restaurant with his father, Gary. “We are not closing. We are waiting for buyers.”
The family also owns a local excavation company and campsite, and Chris Searles said he will change his focus once the restaurant sells.
Maine Real Estate Choice listing agent Sarah Noble said she is interested in the restaurant but has not yet received an offer. Includes snowmobiling from back trails.
Located on Main Street between Long Lake and Crystal Lake, the 1,078-square-foot timber-framed building has housed three restaurants since 1960: The Cubby Hall, The Round Table, and The Cracked Platter. The restaurant and bar has 125 seats.
The current owner purchased and renovated the restaurant in 1996. Previous buildings on the site were destroyed in his 1907 and his 1921 fires. The current column and beam structure was built in his 1923. An oversized Adirondack chair is located near the front door, creating a photo opportunity for visitors.
Known for its handcrafted steak chips and chicken tenders, this restaurant serves American favorites such as burgers, steaks, and seafood. It also hosts live music. One of Chris Searles’ favorite memories of him was being able to play saxophone with one of his in the band at a restaurant.
The restaurant has managed to thrive during the pandemic by offering takeout meals and cocktails and offering al fresco dining at a time when COVID-19 restrictions limited indoor service. I was.
Gary Searles and his former business partner had planned to sell the restaurant from the beginning, but the real estate market and restaurant sales were booming, so the Searles decided now was the time to sell. But don’t rush.
“We like to pick buyers who have the same style and flavor as us,” said Chris Searles.