A grocery store, a bar, off sale liquor store and mobile home park was located on 33rd and 3rd street in St. Cloud.  It opened in 1945 and It was called Syd and Cecil's Little City.  Syd and Cecil O'Hara managed the place.  I was joined by Steve Penick and John Decker from the Stearns History Museum and local historian Jim Grabinski on WJON.  Grabinski says Syd and Cecil's was very supportive of area sports teams and was a meeting place for players after games.

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Syd and Cecil's Little City was a staple on what was the western side of St. Cloud until 1978 when Tim O'Hara purchased the place from his uncle and dad.  Tim and his younger brothers ran the place, tore the building down, and removed the mobile home park which was south and west of the building.  The old building was facing 33rd street.  The new building, which still exists today, faces 3rd street.  The much larger building was owned and operated with the name O'Hara's Brew Pub and Restaurant from 1978 until 2007.

Photo by WJON.com's Jim Maurice
Photo by WJON.com's Jim Maurice

Grabinski recalls O'Hara's had an Italian night on Wednesday's and the Chef was Chef Dan, who's now moved on to Nelson Brothers in Clearwater.  He says O'Hara's was also known for their Sunday brunch and expansive game area in the basement.  Grabinski says the downstairs bar and gaming area was owned by the younger brothers of Tim O'Hara. He says "The brothers" supplied video games, pool tables, darts, etc.. to bars.  Grabinski says it was two businesses in one.

Steve Penick says the O'Hara brothers were also the first in the St. Cloud area to start a micro brewery in the 1990s.  John Decker says 3rd street was a main road going into St. Cloud to the east and Waite Park to the west at that time.  Another restaurant moved into a portion of the O'Hara's building in 2007 and was operated for a short period of time. It was called McCann's.  The building has since been split up into numerous commercial options.

If you'd like to listen to my full conversation with Steve, John and Jim it is available below.



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