Neighborhood Bar Owner Left Corporate America for Own Company
Judge's Bar is owned by a two-man team and they hope more people will find them and come back.
Last week, a representative of Judge's Bar in Joliet was on the courthouse lawn handing out coupons for a free round at the establishment. But the bar owners are not just trying to cash in on the Peterson trial. One of the owners will be out on the Caterpillar picket line Wednesday afternoon handing out the same coupons.
"I'm doing it to support the workers, but I certainly hope they come back," John Dagnon, co-owner said.
Dagnon owns the bar with business partner Omar Rudoini. The two have worked together in business before. Rudoini owns LA Boxing Clubs and Dagnon handles the bookeeping for that business. The two opened Judges in March. Prior to owning his own business, Dagnon was in banking. Additionally, he helps other businesses to craft business plans, so he spent a lot of time drafting his own.
Despite being in the downtown area, where there are a number of bars, Dagnon believes Judge's fills a niche that the others do not.
"This is the only comfortable place to come and watch a game," he said.
Dagnon said Judge's is a bar. They have frozen pizzas they will heat up for purchase and cheese balls, but that's it. They do not serve any other food.
The bar, which has been a bar since 1986 and before that was the Key Club, had a lot of improvements when Dagnon and Rudoini took over.
"I took down 96 t-shirts from the ceiling," he said.
The new owners cleaned out the space and the improvements are not finished.
Dagnon said he anticipates a number of additional improvements to the outdoor space, including televisions, heat lamps and a retractable roof.