For Ginger Grutzius, she is poised to be all things to all people who want to have a good time in San Leon.
Her namesake Ginger’s Sports Bar (located at 2007 Bayshore Drive) offers as multiple options to match as many moods and vibes you can conjure up.
“I’ve always been a visionary,” Ginger said. “My mom (Deloris Grutzius-Drewing) told me to always set my mind that I can do it, and make a plan and do it.
For someone who lost both her business and home to Hurricane Ike, the recovery that is both personal and financial continues to surge.
Walk in and see what starts off as a comfortable sports bar and fans out into a poker room or private event room, outdoor stage, a pergola for wedding ceremonies, an outdoor bar and a cozy fireplace inside or a gas-powered fire pit outside.
“After the storm, I was angry. Everything around me reminded me of loss: money and my life savings, my business,” she said. “I had lost it all.”
A trip to Corpus Christi, brought her to the top of a hotel overlooking the Gulf. As she stood close to the edge with the Gulf breeze swirling around her, she wanted the pain to end.
Jumping would take away the pain. Or would it?
“Everything seemed to stop,” Ginger recalled. “Then I realized that my mom and I could help my community. I saw and really looked at my personal life.
“Truly by the grace of God, I didn’t jump. If I had jumped, I would never have been able to accomplish what I was meant to do or meet Jesus,” she said.
Instead, Ginger threw herself into her business, planning, painting and planting with a mission.
Engaged four times (to a pilot, a retail developer, a CPA and a surgeon) but never married, Ginger learned that she was not cut out to be an accessory for a man who had everything and wanted nothing more than arm candy. “They wanted to own me,” she said. “I wanted to be more than a possession and a wife. My calling was to be in business for myself.”
The result of her endeavor is more than a sports bar. Sure, Ginger’s has flat-screen TVs in view from every direction to cheer your favorite team, but there is also an intimate, indoor stage for open mic nights (Wednesdays).
On Saturdays, local live bands or karaoke are on tap, in addition to 24 draft beers. On Fridays, Ginger’s transforms into a hip, trendy dance club with club mix provided by the DJs of South Beat Music.
Just off the main bar area, the Winchester Room offers a smoke-free space for special events and private dining with its signature chandelier made of the classic rifle. When the room isn’t reserved, Texas Hold ’em is the game on the weekends – if you’ve got the right poker face.
Most places only have one menu, but Ginger’s comes at you with three menus: cocktails, shots and food & wine.
The grub is perfect when the game is on. The Grand Slam Burger should satisfy that urge for savory choice Angus beef with 1/3-pound juicy patty, smoky bacon and creamy avocado.
The bun is so big, you’ll have to use the steak knife to cut this monster in half!
Ginger is right where she wants to be. “San Leon is a rising star and so is Ginger’s,” she said.
It’s worth noting, there is more to Ginger than just Ginger’s Sports Bar… but that is another story.
By Mark Evangelista