Crowbar Restaurant Pries Away Barton’s Sketchy Image

By Gore Vidal Park

Barton Street Neighbourhood architecture

Barton Village about to get a makeover | Photo Joanna St. Jacques

The venerable Crowbar restaurant, at Barton East and Elgin is in for a

Barton Village Business Improvement Association President Jerry Canelli
is thrilled with the news.  “Barton’s back, baby!  When they put in the
new Beer Store, they made it a drive through because people were afraid
to leave their cars with a criminal themed restaurant on the corner.”

“It was really bringing down the property values here.  You got
everything you need right here: big parking lots, a funeral home, a few
rub and tugs, the detention centre, and yet nothing was taking off
around here.  Why?  Because you have a restaurant that just screams
‘hug-a-thug’.  That doesn’t belong on Trendy Barton Street.”

Crowbar owner Chris Bacon is non-plussed.  “I don’t get what the big
fuss is.  I named it Crowbar after Kelly Jay’s great Hamilton band.

For all these years, I never knew people associated it with the jail!
Once Mr. Cannoli  pointed that out, I knew I had to change it right

Not everyone is pleased.  Local hip-hop magnate Larry D-Money decries
the gentrification.  “We used to have the whole Stainless Steel crew
shooting their straight-to-youtube vids down here on Barton, but the
street’s no longer gangster, or even ganja.”  Jigz Crillz had to shoot
his last video at the City Motor Hotel.  ”

That’s forty minutes of his
time on the number 2 bus, rather than in the studio.”

But Bacon has no regrets with the name change, even though the
transition has been bumpy. “At first, to be true to Crowbar, I called
it “Oh What a Feeling” and put up a big neon sign, but then I got a lot
of people confusing it with Hamilton Strip.  So I’m having to change
the name again.”

When asked about what the new name will be, he hesitates.  “I’ve chosen
a name that fits with Barton’s new upscale image, but I’m still going
to name it after another great Hamilton band… I’m going to reopen as


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Trendy Barton: Locke’s Ugly Little Sister (Gets A New Name)


An artist rendition of Trendy Barton Street‘s new sign

Barton Village BIA has got everyone talking about Barton Street’s unprecedented move to rename it’s street to “Trendy Barton Street.”  Inspired by the real estate descriptions of “Trendy” Locke Street, the BIA hopes to drum up similar interest in Barton Street.

The president of Barton Village BIA, Jerry Canelli, says, “No one has used an adjective to boost their street’s buzz.  You’ve got the Lincoln Alexander Parkway, the Queen Elizabeth Way, but never ‘Jumpin’ James Street’ or ‘Speedy Main.’  This is an example of how creative Trendy Barton Street is.”

The Artcrawl tapers off at Barton Street, but the fun doesn’t stop there.  The massage parlour, Exxotica Spa, recent winners of a Civic Award of Excellency, has obviously rubbed council the right way.  But it’s staples like Arruda’s hardware store and Europa Ceramic Tile that keep people walking the street.

Midhusband Clinic Creates Solid Support

Barton Street Neighbourhood architecture

Barton Village in all it’s glory and site of Midhusband clinic | photo by Joanna St. Jacques

The first twenty-five midhusbands will graduate McMaster’s Midhusbandry program early on this spring, each of them with a guaranteed, full-time position at Trendy Barton’s Midhusband Clinic.   The co-founder of midhusbandry, Felipe Soffhans, tells HTN, “These men are not just meat-in-the-seat.  Each of the various positions, are going to be vital to the health of men in this community.  We’re trusting a lot into their hands.  Men’s sexual health is about to get a lot firmer, with advocates like these handling them.”

In your opinion, will the name change boost Barton Street, or is it a foolish marketing ploy?

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Civic Award-Winning Rub Parlour Tugs on Hamilton’s Heartstrings

Barton Street Spa

Providing Barton Street Residents with the Tempature since 1984 – photo by J. St. Jacques

“They show us what’s hot, and what’s not”

Council did not blush when they awarded the Exxotica Spa a Civic Award for “providing Hamiltonians with a simple, yet essential service: displaying the temperature.”   The “Today’s Temperature” sign has housed the same, reliable thermometer since July 2nd, 1984.  People on the street can’t imagine it any other way.

Barton Street Tempature Sign

The undoubtedly off-center signs still serve their purpose – photo: J. St. Jacques

“I’ve never been in there, believe me, but I always look at the temperature after picking up supplies at the hardware store,” says José Silva, a 59-year-old construction foreman.    “It’s been there as long as I can remember, and I think the city is doing the right thing.”

Not everyone is echoing his sentiments.   A local sub shop owner, who wishes to remain anonymous, says that place is a blight on the street.  “Their signs are off-center, and they spell “exotica” with two “x’s.”  That just doesn’t make sense.  If anyone should get an award, it’s us for “The Pugger” – Hamilton’s best lunch option.”

While citizens may be concerned with the signage, they will continue to provide Barton Street with the temperature, rain or shine.

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LIGHT NEWS STORY: Pickles the Dog Barks Out The Alphabet on Barton St E

Pickles the Dog

Pickles, posing in the comfort of Hamilton Fish and Strips photo by NYCgal

Pickles the dog is the darling of Barton St E.  When he’s not barking out people’s names for potato chips, he’s whizzing in his favourite spot: The Cash Store on Barton and Ottawa.

“Pickles is my main source of income,” says owner, “Chips” Phillip.  Chips gets his handle from his food of choice.  “I put a hat down, collecting change – and I’ve got a sign that says – ‘Pickles barks your name for chips and change.  I have to say, I’ve tried about every flavour known to man.  A British feller gave me a bag of mint and lamb chips.  A feast for the senses.”

Not everyone loves pickles, though.  The owner of Hamilton Fish and Strips, a strip club/fish n chip shop” says he’s a nuisance and drives away clients.  “No one can understand him.  I lost a good bag of chips listening to him bark out nonsense – he spelled my fuc*in’ name wrong too.  Terry with a ‘y’ you fuc*in’ mutt.”

Whether you love or hate this adorable mutt, Happy New Year’s Pickles and Chips.  May your chips run as freely as your spirits.