An Eckley icon is back in business.

“Everybody’s excited. We’ve been swamped,” said Jeannie Leerar, one of the owners of the Eckley Bar & Grill, which had a soft opening on October 18.

The establishment located along Highway 34 in central Yuma County was a popular stopping point for locals, and others from the area, for decades.

It was known as The Silver Spur when it burned down several years ago. A new building eventually was put up, and again operated as The Silver Spur. However, it eventually went into foreclosure.

Leerar, a born and raised Eckleyite, said they attempted to purchase it at that time, but a gentleman from Windsor won out. However, it was never reopened so Leerar said they called and asked the man if he was going to open it, and if not, would be willing to sell.

He agreed to the latter proposition, and Leerar, her husband Mike and friend Terry Oestman teamed up to purchase the establishment.

Mike Leerar, Jeannie Leerar and Terry Oestman are pictured behind the bar in front of the Eckley Tiger. (Courtesy Photo)

Then they got to work making some interior improvements. The kitchen was expanded, the bar and the area behind it were redone, there was work on the floor, and a privacy wall was put up in front of the restroom doors. They put in some booths as well.

Perhaps one of the coolest touches was the incorporation of the old Eckley Tiger mascot in the center of the wall behind the bar.

“It is an icon,” Leerar said. “I was raised here in Eckley and have a lot of memories about this place.”

It has been a gradual reopening. The owners just received the liquor license, and hope to have bar fully stocked by this weekend. Leerar said they plan to have a grand opening soon after all the construction work is done.

Twin sisters Darlene Workman and Marlene Mitton worked at the Silver Spur before it burned down, and are back now as the daytime cooks. The menu is the regular bar & grill type fare, such as burgers and fries, but there are specials once or twice per week.

For now the Leerars and Oestman are getting used to operating such an establishment, and all of them have been putting in a lot of hours as business has been steady. The duties include filling in as the nighttime cook.

“The first week we were open, it was like ‘holy cow,’” she said. “When you first start, you don’t know what to expect.”

However, they are getting the hang of it, and plan on full speed ahead.

The Eckley Bar & Grill is open every day except Tuesday, opening at 11 a.m. each day, closing at 8 p.m. Sunday, 10 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, and at least until midnight on Friday and Saturday. They also will do to-go orders, just call 359-2344.