Scott and his partners (one being his dad) bought the place in 1985 and changed the name from “The Landshark” to “Knights Inn.” With the purchase of this property, they inherited the clientele that came with it, and at the time it was a very unsavory type of clientele. Back then, it was referred to as a biker bar and pool hall. During those early years, Knights Inn wasn’t looked upon very favorably by the Police, the City or the locals because of the bikers that would ride into town every night around 10pm wreaking havoc until 2am. Every biker gang you could name would come to the Knights Inn, including the well-known Hells Angels. In 1993 Scott bought out his partners, and decided it was time for a change. This is when he changed the name from Knights Inn to Magoo’s Grill and Bar. Scott knew he needed to get rid of the current clientele in order to change the image and reputation that the bikers and Knights Inn had created, so one by one he slowly started weeding them out by letting them know that they weren’t welcome back to Magoo’s because of their morally disreputable behavior (Ok, those are my words. I’m sure Scott was a little more straight forward then that 😉). Whatever he told them worked, and Magoo’s was on the road to rebuilding and rebranding. Magoo’s had 3 pool tables and soon became the mecca for pool leagues (you know, kind of like bowling leagues, but this one is with a cue ball and pool table), and 5 nights a week there were league games. Well, this too became contentious at times because of the extreme competitiveness of the leagues who weren’t very nice to the other patrons, and it started turning into a place that the pool players were running. So again, Scott needed to rebrand and rebuild, this time with some changes to the building and structure. But, he ran into some road blocks when trying to get permits from the City of PH (this was a long time ago), but with the PH Chamber of Commerce’s help, the City approved his permits to make the changes he asked for (way to go PH Chamber, woot woot). In 2007, he changed the name from Magoo’s Grill and Bar to what we now know and love today, Magoo’s Grill of Pleasant Hill. He made many other changes over the following years, including removing the pool tables which made the leagues very angry (that’s a whole other story you can ask Scott about).
Here are some other things you may not have known about Magoo’s…
- From 1960-70 that location was a topless bar called “The Body Shop.” Our little town of Pleasant Hill had a topless bar, who knew?
- There used to be a Tattoo parlor upstairs from Knights Inn, and all the biker’s would head up there after 2am to continue the party and wreak more havoc.
- Every summer (June-Aug) Scott has what is called “Senior Summer” where all Seniors 65 yrs and older get half off of their food orders.
- They have Prime Rib Thursday’s where you can choose between a Regular Cut (10oz) for $10.99 or a Cowboy Cut (14oz) for $14.99.
- Scott is very active in the Community and the Chamber, and has made and continues to make a big difference throughout (as a matter of fact our January Business Mixer is going to be at Magoo’s).
I have barely scratched the surface of Scott and the history of Magoo’s, but as you can see Scott and Magoo's have stood the test of time by going through a series of transformations from biker bar to an amazing food destination.
Whether you choose to dine in the beautiful open dining room, slide into a private booth, relax in the fresh air of the front patio, or cozy up to the bar, you will be treated to friendly service and great food that can satisfy any appetite! If you’re looking to catch your favorite sporting event, there are eight Direct TV screens in the separate bar area for your viewing pleasure! Learn more about their menu and other offerings here http://magoosgrill.com/index.php?action=home. Thank you Scott for taking the time to fill me in on the amazing history of Magoo’s. One last and very important thing to pass along to you all…Scott will give you half off (food only) if you mention #TinaTuesday (use it just one time please). Thank you so much Scott. P.S. My Grilled Tri-Tip Salad was AHHMAZING today.