LONGMONT — A longmont Longmont institution, A Bit of Billiards Sports Bar Grill, will close by spring. The Sub Factory, which operates out of The Bit, will be shutting down within a week.
"It's sad that the Sub Factory is closing," said George Blackham, The Bit's owner since 2007. "It's served Longmont for so many years."
Maureen Blackham, George's wife, has been operating The Sub Factory since 1979. She moved it into The Bit's space in 2009.
A Bit of Billiards opened in 1982 by two former Longmont air traffic controllers who had been fired the year before by President Reagan for going on strike.
George Blackham, who has worked there since 1991 and formerly ran just the kitchen operations, took over the entire business in 2007.
The Bit was not asked to renew its lease, Blackham said. The owners of the shopping center, Blackfox Parkway Associates, are giving the center at 700 Ken Pratt Blvd. a multimillion-dollar makeover and are changing its name to the Parkway Promenade Shopping Center.
Richard Groves of Blackfox declined to comment on not renewing The Bit's lease other than to say it was a business decision. Boulder's Lucky's Market has already announced plans to open a new store in the rehabbed center this year.
While he said he feels bad about his wife losing her longtime business, Blackham said he's relieved The Bit is going away.
"I don't mind closing it at all now," Blackham said. "I spend a lot of time here — 12 to 13 hours a day."
The last day for Sub Factory and the kitchen will be Monday, and the rest of The Bit will close no later than May 31.