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Sunnyside’s PJ Horgan’s to close its doors on Sunday

PJ Horgan’s at 49-02 Skillman Ave. (Photo: Nathaly Pesantez for Queens Post)

Feb. 29, 2024 By Staff Report 

PJ Horgan’s, an Irish bar and eatery that has served Sunnyside for over 60 years, has announced that it will close its doors for the last time on Sunday. 

The bar wrote a post on Instagram, stating that it will be closing its doors permanently at 49-02 Skillman Ave. following a “final hurrah” for the St. Pat’s for All Parade on Sunday, March 3. 

A spokesperson for the bar wrote that they hoped that the “doors will not stay closed for long”. 

The Irish bar and eatery opened at its current location on the corner of 49th Street and Skillman Avenue in March 2018 after shuttering at its original location on Queens Boulevard three years earlier. 

Irish native Patrick Joseph Horgan opened the original bar in 1963 and ran the establishment for more than three decades before retiring in 1994. 

Despite changing ownership and location, the bar retained Horgan’s name as a testament to the neighborhood establishment that he had built. 

The bar closed for good at its original location at 42-17 Queens Blvd. in November 2015 after suffering damage during a kitchen fire in April of that year. 

Horgan’s initially closed “temporarily” for repairs, but then-owner John Murphy later decided to close the bar for good. 

The original PJ Horgans on Queens Blvd. (File photo| Queenspost)

John Ciafone, an attorney and former City Council candidate, bought the site along with an adjacent shuttered movie theater as part of his plans to develop a five-to-seven-story building at the location. The project has not yet been completed due to a series of delays.  

Joe Gillespie, a Sunnyside resident who owned the bar before Murphy, announced plans in 2017 to create “an updated version” of the original PJ Horgan’s on Skillman Avenue. 

The Skillman Avenue location once housed a dry-cleaning business and required extensive renovations before it opened to the public in 2018. 

The new pub offered a variety of craft and draft beers in addition to whiskeys, gin, cocktails, and an extensive food menu consisting of standard pub fare. 

In a post on their website, PJ Horgan’s said the new location was not a recreation of the original pub but rather a 21st-century tribute to Patrick Joseph Horgan. 

Sunday’s finale will kick off at noon, the bar said on Instagram, and will coincide with the annual St. Pat’s for All Parade. 

The parade, which will begin at noon at the corner of Skillman Avenue and 43rd Street, has taken place in Sunnyside and Woodside for more than two decades in response to the exclusion of LGBTQ individuals from the Manhattan St. Patrick’s Day Parade. 

The St. Pat’s for All Parade remains an annual Sunnyside tradition even though LGBTQ groups are now permitted to march in the Manhattan parade. 

Last year’s event concluded at the corner of 58th Street and Woodside Avenue. 

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