Residents pushing to save the only bar in town, Pit Stop
GREENWOOD, Del. – It’s been a whole month since Jerry Well’s bar, Pit Stop in Greenwood was shut down for the third time, this time indefinitely after a fight broke out. Now residents and employees say they are upset and some are even outraged. “This shut down is damaging more than just me, it’s hurting the community as well,” says Wells. “Something’s gotta change, something has to happen because this is not right.”
According to Wells, the town thought it would be unsafe and they were taking measures to make sure this didn’t happen again.
However, while officials debate the bar’s future, Wells and his employees are without pay until further notice. “This is all I have, this is my job so I can’t continue to live here if I don’t pay my bills, so I need this,” says a bartender and resident, Heather O’Day.
We’re told there have been two council meetings where the community has expressed their feelings and still no decision leaving some to take to social media. Some say Greenwood is a small town and shutting down one of the only places that allows people to enjoy themselves while also bringing in revenue, isn’t a smart decision. “Certainly I don’t want to see these people go anywhere,” says 20 year resident, Frank Paquette. “The mayor and the council are overreacting for what they’re trying to do and I’m against it.”
However, not everyone is for the bar including some who say since Wells bought the bar two years ago, things have been worse. “There was a bar here before and there was problems too but it seems like it’s been a whole lot more,” says resident Dennis Bryfogle Jr. His father Dennis Bryfogle, owner of the apartments next door to the bar expresses his concern with the bar. He tells 47 ABC, his tenants have no where to park and the music is always too loud. He attempted to solve the issues but can’t seem to come to a resolution. “It makes you have the impression that he’s not a guy who wants to be here running a business that wants to be agreeable with the rest of the town. That’s what it makes it look like,” says Bryfogle.
Although there are residents with complaints, some see the bar as more than just a place to hang out. “The first time we came into the bar, it was like we were regulars there, everyone treats you like family,” says resident, Brandi Avery.
One resident who recently moved to Greenwood tells us, he is a veteran who struggles with severe anxiety. He says, Wells and his friends invited him to the bar to meet people and make friends. Now he tell us, he’s found a place to call home and he hopes they don’t have close permanently. “Can there be things that can be done, yeah but that would also have to include the town helping out,” says Bryon Tuttles.
At the end of the day all the residents we spoke with say, they just want to find some common ground with the town to keep the bar open, keep everyone employed, and keep residents on both sides happy. “We want people to come live here. There is a development being built, the town is counting on people to buy those houses and become residents of Greenwood. Then you gotta meet us half way,” says resident and representative for the group, Citizens of Greenwood, Kelli Nuwer.
Now we reached out to the local police department as well as the town hall for an interview. They say they won’t be making any comments and their attorney would be in touch.
As for Wells, he says he wants to find a way to move forward with the town. Whether that would be paying for extra police patrol on weekends to monitor any problems that could come from the bar. Wells tells us, he has put his life savings into this bar and doesn’t want to lose his livelihood if this is something that can be fixed.
There have been no decisions as to the reopening of the bar. The investigation is ongoing as to the reasonings behind the fight, and as we know more we will keep you updated.