Pioneertown’s famous Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace is an establishment that has been serving visitors and locals alike since 1982. This legendary venue is known for its mouthwatering mesquite barbecue, live music performances, and top-quality service, and is definitely a must-visit destination when you’re in Pioneertown.
How it all began
Pioneertown was founded back in 1946 by a group of Hollywood investors who had a vision of designing the perfect living movie set – a late 1800s-era frontier town with film-ready facades and interiors that served as attractions open to the public. Some of the town’s original investors and personalities were Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, Russell Hayden, and the Sons of the Pioneers, whom the town was named after. There were more than 50 films and a number of television shows that used Pioneertown as a location throughout the 1940s and 50s.
A leisurely stroll through the town’s Mane Street will take you past saloons, jails, banks, and frontier stables. Step inside however, and you’ll find bowling alleys, ice cream shops, and motels. The original venue for Pappy & Harriet’s was used as a “cantina” set for a number of western films in the 1950s.
In 1972, husband and wife John and Francis (Harriet’s mother) purchased the cantina set, opening it as an outlaw biker burrito bar called “The Cantina.” The venue served patrons for more than a decade. When it closed, John and Francis made sure the place still belonged to the family.
The rise of Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace
In 1982, Harriet, together with her husband Claude “Pappy” Allen opened a brand new bar to the public, calling it Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace. While the new venue was still a favorite spot for bikers, the couple made sure it had a family-friendly atmosphere.
Now serving delicious Tex-Mex cuisine and delighting audience with live music from Pappy and Harriet themselves (together with Kristina, their granddaughter), Pappy & Harriet’s quickly became one of the most popular destinations in the area.
Present-day Pappy & Harriet’s
Today, Pappy & Harriet’s is owned by Linda Krantz and Robyn Celia, two New Yorkers who had fond memories of the venue with a dream of returning it back to its glory days.
Robyn and Linda purchased the place in 2003, restoring the vintage bar’s faded luster. Many famous musicians such as Leon Russell, Robert Plant, Paul McCartney, the Vampire Weekend, and many more have graced the venue’s stage, turning it into a must-visit destination for music lovers.
Pappy & Harriet’s continues to delight visitors and locals with its incredible live music, mouthwatering barbeque, and good times enjoyed by everyone who has stepped through its doors, from bikers in the 1970s to today’s indie rock enthusiasts and everyone in between.
Shows and events at Pappy & Harriet’s
Each week, Pappy & Harriet’s plays host to talented artists and musicians from different walks of life. If you’re in town, this is the perfect place to feel the spirit of Pioneertown. Just sit back, enjoy a few drinks and soak in the atmosphere – there’s nothing quite like enjoying some live music along with some great food and drinks at this historic venue.
Visit Pappy & Harriet’s website to see a list of upcoming performers.