Spirits Owners Help Raise Over $5,000 For Breast Cancer Awareness at Reality Rally

Spirits owners Brad Bohannan and Steve Smith, both far left and right; James Wallington and Arlynn Ilgenfritz from Capture.

Spirits owners Brad Bohannan and Steve Smith, both far left and right; James Wallington and Arlynn Ilgenfritz from Capture.

Reality Rally was a smashing success. Over 100 reality TV stars, including Spirits on Bourbon owners Steve Smith and Brad Bohannan, attended the event in Temecula, California to raise awareness for breast cancer. All proceeds are being donated to Michelle’s Place, a Temecula-based nonprofit that provides support for breast cancer survivors and their families.

Between Steve and Brad, over $5,000 was raised. It Reality Rally founder Gillian Larson’s goal to reach $25,000, but unfortunately she did not reach the mark this year. We hope to help make it happen next year.

See Also: Spirits Owners to Join Reality Rally Aprill 11 to Help Raise Funds for Breast Cancer Awareness

The weekend was particularly interesting for Steve and Brad. After touching down in San Diego, They eventually made our way to Temecula, 2 desert town about an hour to the north. There they got settled into our suites and the next day began their adventure.

The weekend was busy. It started off with the celebrity reception at the Wilson Creek Winery on Friday night. For four hours they mingled with guests and some of your favorite reality TV stars. Nearly 30 reality TV show franchises were represented there.

 

"Mob Wife" Nora Schweihs and Spirits owner Brad Bohannan

“Mob Wife” Nora Schweihs and Spirits owner Brad Bohannan

The next day, however, was anything they ever expected. The day started off with a celebrity autograph meet-and-greet for about an hour and a half. Then things got really interesting. The Reality Rally Race started promptly at 11 a.m. and almost immediately Steve and Brad were racing it up.

Sixty teams out of 120 reality stars were pitted against each other in an Amazing Race-style competition. Things were happening so fast that they barely had time to change into their uniforms. They ran for miles, ran uphill and weaved themselves through obstacle courses. The dry heat does not make it easy! Out of the 60 teams, Team Bar Rescue came in 16th. Not bad!

Brad with wife Arita and Steve with wife Sharon at the Red Carpet Celebration Saturday night.

Brad with wife Arita and Steve with wife Sharon at the Red Carpet Celebration Saturday night.

Besides just getting through the race, Brad was heavily focused on just two goals. “I had two goals, to beat EJ Snyder from Naked and Afraid with my pants on and and not get passed by anyone from The Biggest Loser,” he said.

After the race was finished, everyone gathered again at the Red Carpet Celebration at the South Coast Winery. By the night was finished, everyone was exhausted. The last event was Breakfast with the Stars Celebrity Chefs Showcase. Then beginning on Sunday, Brad and Steve made their way back to New Orleans. And this whole time you probably didn’t know they were out of town for French Quarter Fest.

Team Bar Rescue working hard to bring home the win.

Team Bar Rescue working hard to bring home the win.

The most rewarding part of the whole experience was meeting Gillian and helping to get the word out on breast cancer. If you don’t know, breast cancer is nearly one-fourth of all cancers in women and causes hundreds of thousands of deaths worldwide each year. But with early detection, survival rates are much higher, which is why it’s important to get the word out as much as possible. For more information on breast cancer, visit the National Cancer Institute‘s website.

Team Bar Rescue was honored to have participated in Reality Rally 2014. “When we visited Michelle’s Place and heard the story of Michelle we saw what this weekend was all about,” said Spirits owner Steve Smith.

Michelle’s Place was created in honor of Michelle Watson, a woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the very early age of 23 years. Sadly, Michelle died three years later on July 23, 2000. But in spite of her prognosis, she never stopped living. She continued to make friends and inspire people. Her last wish was to create a breast cancer resource center and eventually it was realized.

“I was honored to join Gillian Larson and raise money for Michelle’s Place at Reality Rally,” Bohannan said.

Reality Rally founder Gillian Larson and Brad Bohannan.

Reality Rally founder Gillian Larson and Brad Bohannan.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Wrestlemania Weekend at Spirits Was A Blast

Spirits on Bourbon

Spirits on Bourbon. Photo by David Minsky

Wrestlemania was awesome and so was everyone who made it out to Spirits on Bourbon, Home of the Resurrection last weekend.

If you find it hard to recap all of the commotion–between the body-slams on the canvas, the constant chants of “Yes! Yes! Yes!” and several mind-bending Resurrection cocktails–don’t worry because we do too. But now we are ready for French Quarter Fest.

We are boiling 15 bags over the course of the entire three-day weekend, three times our normal output.

If last weekend is any indication, then this weekend should be pretty awesome too. Here is a quick run-down of what happened.

Brad Bohannan, Matt Striker and Steve Smith.

Brad Bohannan, Matt Striker and Steve Smith.

We hosted the Chair Shot Reality podcast on Saturday afternoon with special guest and WWE star Matt Striker.

Everyone at Spirits caught the Wrestlemania fever.

Everyone at Spirits caught the Wrestlemania fever.

And the fans absolutely loved it.

The Nasty Boys and Tiffany Vollmer.

The Nasty Boys and Tiffany Vollmer.

The Nasty Boys dropped us a visit on Saturday night for a fan meet-and-greet session.

Steve Smith, Jon Taffer and Brad Bohannan.

Steve Smith, Jon Taffer and Brad Bohannan.

Bar Rescue’s Jon Taffer dropped by incognito on Monday night and paid us a visit.

New friends from Denver.

New friends from Denver.

Most importantly, our fans came to visit us during the weekend, and they came in droves. For that, we would like to thank all of you for coming out. Be sure to like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter. Now it’s time for French Quarter Festival. It’s going to be a great weekend. Let the good times roll.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Turtle Bay on Decatur Triples Crawfish Boil for French Quarter Festival Weekend

We’re tripling our crawfish boil this weekend at Turtle Bay for French Quarter Festival. Photo credit: Giovanni Handal via Wikimedia Commons.

Crawfish, crawdads, freshwater lobsters, mudbugs. Whatever you call ‘em, we got ‘em at our sister bar, Turtle Bay on Decatur.

Beginning Friday, and throughout the weekend, we are increasing our crawfish boil to 15 bags (five bags per day) to keep up with this year’s French Quarter Festival, which promises to be the biggest ever.

Normally, we only boil five bags for the entire weekend (Saturday and Sunday), but this time we are preparing five bags each day as well as adding an extra day to the boil.

We also have a 25 beers on tap, including lots of regional craft brews from Louisiana and Mississippi.

It’s crawfish season and that means these suckers are going to be big and juicy. The boil starts at around 3 p.m. Friday/Saturday/Sunday and them crawdads tend to go quick so you might want to get here early. And don’t forget to suck the heads.

Crawfish baby! Let the good times roll.

Get to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon by following us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

 

“Bar Rescue” Executive Producer and Host Jon Taffer Returning to Spirits on Bourbon April 18 for Book Signing

Bar Rescue executive producer and nightlife expert Jon Taffer

Bar Rescue executive producer and nightlife expert Jon Taffer. Photo Courtesy of Taffer Media.

He came when we needed him the most and left us in good spirits a little over a year ago, but now “Bar Rescue” executive producer and our good friend Jon Taffer is returning to Spirits on Bourbon, Home of the Resurrection on April 18.

This time Jon will meet with fans and sign copies of his new book, “Raise the Bar: An Action-Based Method for Maximum Customer Reactions” from 7:30-9:30 p.m.

As many fans may recall, we first met up with Jon on the February 10, 2013 episode Spike TV’s Bar Rescue, “Turtle On Its Back“, where Taffer and crew transformed our bar from its former name, Turtle Bay on Bourbon, to the bar’s current name and look.

Jon changed everything for us; from the appearance and dynamics of the bar, to the menu and even devised a new specialty drink: the Resurrection. Most importantly, he changed our perspectives on how to properly run a successful bar on Bourbon Street, and for that we cannot thank him enough.

Jon applies his 30-plus years of experience in the bar industry to his own method for increasing revenues. His method, also known as Reaction Management, is based on customer reactions.

In the book Jon writes: “My overarching philosophy is this: all successful business is about creating the right reactions in customers. The best reactions always make the most money.”

The book is filled with great advice for anybody in the industry who aspires to be successful: from owner, manager and even the employee. You can read about it, and much more, in his new book.

For Co-owner Brad Bohannan, having Taffer back at Spirits is like having an old friend back in town. He believes that Taffer’s presence in New Orleans not only attracted more business to the bar, but has also positively impacted the city’s tourism industry.

“We are honored to welcome Jon Taffer back to New Orleans,” Bohannan says. “He not only enjoys our city but has had a hand in promoting our tourism. This will be a huge event and we encourage everyone to come out and meet Jon and support his book which I believe is an industry necessity.”

The event is open to the public with no requirement to purchase his book. There will also be a reception for media from 7:00-7:30 p.m.

Jon’s new book retails for $26 and we have it on sale at Spirits. It gets better: we will give a free Resurrection cocktail for every book purchase (a $15 value).

Join us for a night with Bar Rescue’s Jon Taffer. Get a book, get it signed, meet with Jon, have a Resurrection and maybe even get a shot in Edward’s Barber Chair too. It’s going to be a great time.

For more information on the event, contact Taffer Media Director of Marketing and Communications Jeana Legarda at 702-826-3993, 702-285-1661 or jeana@taffermedia.com.

To get all of the latest news on Jon Taffer, follow him on Twitter @jontaffer.

Want to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Tomorrow: Spirits to Host Wrestling Tag Team Duo “The Nasty Boys” For Fan Meet-and-Greet Session

The Nasty Boys. Photo courtesy of user Endlessdan via Wikimedia Commons.

Brian Knobbs (left) and Jerry Sags (right) of The Nasty Boys. Photo courtesy of user Endlessdan via Wikimedia Commons.

Wrestling fever is in the air with Wrestlemania 30 is coming to New Orleans on Sunday. With that said, WWE tag team duo The Nasty Boys is coming to Spirits on Bourbon to hold a meet and greet for fans tomorrow night from 7 to 10 p.m.

Consisting of members Brian Knobbs and Jerry Sags, The Nasty Boys hail from Whitehall Township in the southeastern portion of Pennsylvania. Unlike many professional wrestling duos, The Nasty Boys were childhood friends who, together, both rose to fame in the professional wrestling circuit.

With their distinctive chain-adorned leather trenchoats, mullet-hawk haircuts and signature wrestling moves–the Pit Stop and Trip to Nastyville–The Nasty Boys have won several championships since 1989, including a tag team championship during Wrestlemania VII in 1991 and three World Championship Wrestling tag team championships from 1993-95.

In his autobiography, professional wrestler Mick Foley described the Nasty Boys as “sloppy as hell, and more than a little dangerous, but they know how to brawl.”

Come meet the real spirit of professional wrestling and join The Nasty Boys at Spirits tomorrow night.

Want to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo

Spirits Owners to Join Reality Rally April 11 to Help Raise Funds for Breast Cancer Awareness

Gillian Larson

Gillian Larson

Reality TV stars will gather in multitude on April 11, including Spirits on Bourbon owners Brad Bohannan and Steve Smith, in Temecula, California for the Reality Rally games to help raise funds for breast cancer awareness.

Bohannan and Smith will join “Survivor: Gabon” star Gillian Larson and 120 reality TV stars from 39 shows to compete in a series of Rally events in Old Town Temecula. Larson founded Reality Rally in 2011.

Reality Rally is a four hour “Amazing Race” style game, where teams dash throughout Old Town Temecula, competing in various challenges and exercises for the sole purpose of bragging rights.

Most importantly, the event raises thousands of dollars and community awareness for Michelle’s Place for Breast Cancer Resource Center. This year’s Reality Rally is in its fourth year and will be held April 11, 12, and 13.

Larson set a fundraising goal of $25,000. If reached, she will shave her head on the steps of City Hall before the start of the Reality Rally game and then walk the red carpet event that evening at South Coast Winery.

Together, Bohannan and Smith have raised over $4,000.

“Like so many women, I feel that my hair is a large part of my identity as it has become my TV Survivor Star identity,” Larson said. “The loss of hair as a side effect of cancer treatment can be so traumatic. In a demonstration of solidarity for the millions of people battling cancer, I will shave my head when we reach $25,000. This will be a life changing moment for me and the funds I raise will be a life prolonging moment for many.”

Anybody can participate in Reality Rally. Teams can consist of three family members, co-workers and/or friends, age 16 and over. Anyone under 18 will require a parent or legal guardian on the same team. Registration is $50.00 per participant and closes on April 5. Complete rally and fundraising information is available at www.realityrally.com.

Want to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon? Follow us on Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo.

Spirits to Host the Chair Shot Reality WrestleMania 30 Talk Show on April 5

Wrestlemania-ccFlickr-Ed-Webster

Photo courtesy of Ed Webster via Flickr/Creative Commons.

As you may or may not know, Wrestlemania 30 is coming to New Orleans and Spirits on Bourbon, Home of the Resurrection has the privilege of hosting the Chair Shot Reality WWE Wrestlemania Party this Saturday, April 5.

Join CSR hosts Justin LaBar, Josh Isenberg and Brian Gulish as they make their final WrestleMania match predictions. Special guest and WWE star Matt Striker will also be present along with the hosts to do a Q&A session for fans. The party starts at 1 p.m., runs ’til 4 p.m. and it’s free to get in.

Two auctions will be held at Spirits: one to give five fans a chance to join CSR during a private crawfish boil at a private location with their close friends, family and some familiar faces from the wrestling world; and the other auction will give one of those fans a chance to sit with the CSR cast at WrestleMania 30, which will be broadcasted via pay-per-view from the Mercedez-Benz Superdome on Sunday, April 6.

To listen to the show, tune into the website wrestlezone.com/tag/chair-shot-reality.

We hope to see you there!

Want to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon? Follow us on Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo.

Spirits Owner Brad Bohannan Speaks at 2014 Nightclub and Bar Convention and Trade Show in Las Vegas

Spirits on Bourbon co-owners Steve Smith (left) and Brad Bohannan (right) rendezvoused with Bar Rescue's Jon Taffer (center) at the 2014 Nighclub and Bar Convention in Las Vegas.

Spirits on Bourbon co-owners Steve Smith (left) and Brad Bohannan (right) rendezvoused with Bar Rescue host Jon Taffer (center) at the 2014 Nighclub and Bar Convention in Las Vegas.

Vegas baby! Spirits on Bourbon owners Steve Smith and Brad Bohannan attended the 2014 Nightclub and Bar Convention and Trade Show in Las Vegas last week March 23-26, with Brad invited to be a guest speaker.

The convention is an exposition of the bar and restaurant industry leaders who gather in Las Vegas each year to share their knowledge and perspective on how to increase revenues within the industry. This year’s convention was held at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Brad spoke on a panel of other bar owners who have appeared on Spike TV’s “Bar Rescue” before a packed house at the “Bar Rescue: Where Are They Now?” event on Monday, March 24, talking about his experience on “Bar Rescue” and its positive impact on the bar.

After appearing on Bar Rescue in February of 2013, Turtle Bay was transformed into a highly-successful bar now called Spirits on Bourbon.

The Bar Rescue panel at the 2014 Nightclub and Bar Convention

The Bar Rescue panel at the 2014 Nightclub and Bar Convention in Las Vegas. Spirits owner Brad Bohannan stands second from the right.

But just merely showing up on TV doesn’t exactly mean dollar signs for the company. The success of Spirits is only partially attributable to its Bar Rescue episode. As Brad explained before the packed room people, the will to succeed comes from the every day drive of the co-owners and nightclub staff.

“You have to believe in it to make it work,” he said. “Greatness is not some unattainable thing, it’s within all of us. You just have to set a goal and go get it.”

Showing up as a guest speaker at a the country’s leading bar and nightclub convention certainly speaks volumes on how far Spirits has come in the last year. Simply attending the convention will not equal a successful bar. The knowledge must be put into practice, according to Brad.

“You have made the first step by attending the Nightclub and Bar Convention,” he said. “The knowledge is out in the seminars and the showroom floor but the knowledge is worthless if you don’t execute it.”

Brad was one of a handful of speakers at the seminar. The others included Jerry Dalrymple, owner of Sorties Tavern in Bellevue, Nebraska; Donna Chilleen from Chilleen’s on 17 in Black Canyon City, Arizona; and Dan Tubridy from Bungalow Bar and Restaurant in Rockaway Beach, New York.

Want to know what’s happening at Spirits on Bourbon? Follow us on Twitter @SpiritsonBourbo.