Last Chance Saloon Closes

The Last Chance Saloon and Grill in downtown Grayslake has closed, but new owners will be taking over the location.

The Last Chance Saloon and Grill, a downtown Grayslake landmark for nearly 20 years, closed its doors Monday. The new owners, who have yet to be identified, will be taking over the business and reopening, reportedly in a matter of weeks.

Former Last Chance owners Gary Roberts Sr. and Gary Roberts Jr. posted this statement on their Facebook Monday:

Today is a day that is very sad for me but someone once said nothing last forever. It has been a pleasure for my son and I to own The Last Chance for the past 19 years. Tomorrow we pass ownership on.

The new owners will be closing the restaurant for a few weeks but it will only be better when it reopens. Thanks to all the great guest and employees who made The Chance such a success. Stop by today and say Hi. Thanks, Gary and Gary.

The Center Street restaurant, known for its laid-back character, kitschy Western decor and eccentric memorabilia and pictures, like the John Wayne mural on the porch, had its last gathering with the old gang Monday night.

"My son and I had a great 19 years serving the Grayslake and surrounding communities," Gary Roberts Sr. told Patch via e-mail. "It was time for me to move on and I think the new owners will put new life back in The Chance. Very sad time for us."

Loyal, long-time Last Chance customers have been posting reactionary comments and well-wishes on their Facebook

"Oh wow. Grayslake will never be the same. Good luck to you," wrote Chantelle Rogers Rodriguez.

"My Dad used to work there," wrote Christina Morales. "I remember Big Gary And Little Gary. They were nice people!"

"Thank you for all of your support of The Oasis/Grayslake Youth Center. Wishing you sweet times in your futures," wrote Joyce Campbell.

"So sad! My husband and I met at the Chance. Thanks for the great memories," wrote Maribel Lopez.

"Thanks Gary Sr. and Gary Jr. You have made many Friday and Saturday nights awesome and Sunday and Monday football nights over the past few years great. I hope they don't change the inside of the bar. I love the interior," wrote Joseph Kozikowski.

"My favorite place in town. Hope it stays the same. You were wonderful and had great food and fantastic customer service. Hope that doesn't change. Will miss seeing you -- best of luck," wrote Julie Hoffer Marcus.

Grayslake landmark

With its distinguished omega-shaped roof line design, the building the Last Chance inhabits is a local historical landmark. According to the  the structure was originally built in 1902 at 133 Center Street. In 1941, the building became home to the 5&10c Store. Its penny-candy counter is displayed at the Grayslake Heritage Center & Museum.

Share your memories of The Last Chance Saloon in the comments.

Andy T November 14, 2012 at 12:43 PM
Have the Emil's owners purchased Last Chance?
LMJ November 14, 2012 at 03:04 PM
Yet another business in the increasing line of business going out of business in district 46 and 127... when is enough, enough? Yet, it appears the people in charge of the UNIONS are forcing their hands to strike soon, in D46, to the demise of everyone in their districts. Teachers, students, parents, and taxpayers. These same people from the Unions will tout that it is a shame for these business owners and Grayslake, but will feel no responsibility for being part of the problem. If there was ever a time, for the Unions to not just serve themselves, but their communities, teachers, and students... it is now. I mean, which teacher's are prepared to loose their jobs over what is most likely being negotiated? What student or parent would like to look forward to not having the teacher that they hope to have next year, because of what the Union's are fighting for? You think that I am kidding? Look at the School Board meetings, folks. They are talking about closing schools! There is lots of red in their budget that they have to make up for. Lord knows, the district cannot afford anymore. You need to come to meetings and voice your concern. No one is going to be able to cover for what you have to say. YOU have to say it.
Johny November 14, 2012 at 03:46 PM
Excuse me? The Last Chance, which didn't keep up with the new kids going out of business has something to do with the schools? The Chance closed because it wouldn't/couldn't compete. Real is real.
Ken Idstein November 14, 2012 at 03:52 PM
"20 Years" ??? !!!!
Benjamin Dover November 14, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Lisa...I see that just like your husband Lennie, you make up lies to fit your narrative. The Last Chance is not "going out of business" as you claim...the owners sold the business and the new owners are going to do some remodeling before re-opening. Can either of you ever go on one of your rants without telling some sort of lie. Now go ahead and play the victim.
Brad Faxton November 14, 2012 at 04:41 PM
What on earth are you talking about. LCS business has been on the steep decline for a long time. The place is tired. Nearly every fri/sat night, the place is empty. Clearly if your logic is sound, The Vine & Bulldogs should be going out of business very soon - clearly they are not. They are thriving. This has nothing to do with a dysfunctional school board you loon.
Brad Faxton November 14, 2012 at 04:45 PM
On a completely unrelated note, gas prices in ALL of Florida have SKYROCKETED this AM to over $6/gal - (according to Fox news). This massive price increase will follow suit to the rest of the country by the end of the week. Better stock up. The cause is the election. Period. http://www.opposingviews.com/i/society/transportation/cars/florida-gas-station-charging-tourists-644-gallon http://www.politifact.com/florida/statements/2012/feb/23/ron-paul/gas-prices-are-6-gallon-florida-says-ron-paul/
Locals November 14, 2012 at 05:09 PM
I agree with the other idiot, the UNIONS have caused the last chance to close, children to be uneducated, the housing crisis, and the war! A good establishment is closing and this is the format for a rant like that?
Softball Jim November 14, 2012 at 08:48 PM
Brad, Did you even read the entire article? These two gas stations are gouging the tourists with the prices. They are around Walt Disney and the average price for gas in the state of Florida is about $3.70. Do throw some B.S. half baked article out there and not read them first. It has ABSOLUTLY nothing to do with the election. Imagine my arm swinging and throwing the B.S. flag at your feet !
Softball Jim November 14, 2012 at 08:53 PM
LMJ, So you are 1-3 in recently saying that more buisness are going out of buisness in Grayslake. Only Pat's has closed it's doors. The Last Chance, and the Piggly Wiggly have new owners and are staying in buisness. Glad the Farmers Fresh Market (AKA a division of Piggly Wiggly) and the Chance are getting fresh blood and staying in buisness.
Terri November 14, 2012 at 08:59 PM
SJ I think Brad was attempting to be as obtuse as Mr & Mrs Jarratt... Brad...correct me if I'm wrong.
Nightcrawler November 14, 2012 at 09:23 PM
LMJ - That's your all-time dumbest post.
LMJ November 14, 2012 at 09:36 PM
Then why was it worth your time to post?
Rich November 15, 2012 at 02:44 AM
I'll never forget the brawl for it all back in 2008 what a great night. Thank you last chance!!!
Dr.Dan November 15, 2012 at 08:08 AM
I do hope the new owners of LCS retain Mark the ”kj” who hosted karaoke on friday and saturday nights. Yes he's a ham sometimes but who else is gonna do nipple guns with me? Mark was the ONLY reason Rhonda and I stopped by there. I hope the new owners see this site and I do hope all of our karaoke diva's chime in and support Marks return.
Brad Faxton November 15, 2012 at 11:31 AM
At least my completely absurd rants include fist bumps and spitting on the floor. You are just a total waste of bytes on the Int3rweb.
Brad Faxton November 15, 2012 at 11:33 AM
Case in point - Fox truly did run a 1/2 day long whatever and try to make the whole country believe that the world was about to end. The real truth is just 1 gas station was (rather has always) been doing this.
LMJ November 15, 2012 at 12:30 PM
I'll take that as a total complement from you, Brad. Thanks for making my day.
Brad Faxton November 15, 2012 at 02:42 PM
Now that made me chuckle.
Melissa November 15, 2012 at 06:32 PM
Right on Dr. Dan, right on!
Ralf Landmesser November 16, 2012 at 02:55 PM
Brad, I was a bartender at the Last Chance on Fridays and Saturdays and I take great exception with your blanket statement that, "Nearly every fri/sat night, the place is empty." Not only would all of my valued patrons disagree with you, my tip jar certainly would argue just the opposite.
Greg F November 16, 2012 at 04:31 PM
I concur with Ralf. Over the last few years, my wife, brother and I have spent many great nights at the Saloon (sometimes being overserved by Ralf!) and while the bar has it's faults, you cant argue with the nostalgia and charm it brought. It was the place where people went when they got tired paying $12 for a drink at the Vine and could have a good time. Dr. Dan, you hit it right on the head...Mark drove a lot of the weekend business and deserves to continue his services there if the new owners want to continue the tradition. PAM! PAM! PAM! PAM! PAM!
Sandy Scandura Casher November 19, 2012 at 06:16 PM
Gas in Tampa is $3.25.
Jcallahan November 21, 2012 at 08:19 AM
I heard that Emil's bought it, and is turning it into a restaurant.
Nightcrawler November 21, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Dang. I thought they'd convert it into a UFC fight venue.
Don December 04, 2012 at 08:49 PM
Rumor is that Emil's bought the chance and are turning it into an Italian Steak Restuarant.
Amy Moffatt December 11, 2012 at 08:01 PM
It's sad to see the Last Chance Saloon closed but when your competing with other restaurant's in Grayslake it's a dog eat dog world out there. I've lived in Grayslake for 19 years and I loved how on my birthday I would get a card in the mail so I am going to miss that. I hope the new owner's can do something right to that building and make sure that they bring in the right customers like the Last Chance had everytime I visited it.
DR76 January 22, 2013 at 10:39 PM
When I ate here in the 90s I loved it. Slowly the food quality seemed to taper off. I never attended the karaoke or drank, so maybe I was missing its real value. Of course, I don't enjoy seeing small business struggle, but I also 'vote with my dollars' and I am part of why it closed. I stopped going there because I felt I could get something I enjoyed more elsewhere.
Luke Warmwater March 09, 2013 at 09:46 PM
My dad created the original LCS in the 60's, built it out of Pat Sheehan's bar. Our trips out west collected a lot of the art on the walls and I used to stock the coolers before going to GCHS each morning. It was a labor of love. Dad's vision will live on and that's good.


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