This bear is a famous figure in Duluth. At least we think it's this bear. Back in the late 20's, after following a truck of fresh fish down the shore in the early morning, a bear broke into Hotel Duluth's coffee shop in search of, I don't know, honey? An inebriated fellow chased the bear out into the street with a hammer, where the cops unsuccessfully tried to lasso it. After a scuffle and a few lunges at passersby, the bear was shot. Afterwards it was stuffed and displayed in the coffee shop, which was renamed the Black Bear Lounge by popular accord. After prohibition the coffee shop became a bar.
There are a few take-homes here, the first being that as recently as the 20's the Duluth police were not great rope handlers. Also, for those of you interested in local geography - Hotel Duluth became Greysolon, and the Black Bear Lounge eventually became Black Water Lounge. Also, and here we're getting a little closer to the provenance of this particular bear, after it stood in Black Bear Lounge, the bear moved to Grandma's, where it stood for many years, though there's some debate about whether or not it was, indeed, the same bear.
Now, stick with me here, this is where it gets EXTREMELY RELEVANT. The bear still stands - in storage.This bear is currently standing in the very same space where we're hoping to build Vikre Distillery. We can't say exactly where that is quite yet. But the bear is standing there, waiting. To us, he looks game (ha) for a new venture. Don't you think?