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Nye's Polonaise To Close After 65 Years

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) - It'll soon be last call for a Northeast Minneapolis institution.

Nye's Polonaise Room is closing its doors after 65 years.

Nye's was founded in 1950 and not much has changed since.

The restaurant and bar will shut down sometime next year, giving patrons time to have that last round.

"I'm going to miss the old memories," said Michael Rainville.

A huge smile takes over Rainville's face when he thinks about the good times he's had inside Nye's.

"This is where I learned to do the polka," he said. "I've had a lot of great sing-a-longs here with my friends and relatives, and it's the change of an era."

Rainville said Nye's has been a big part of his family for generations.

"My family moved to Northeast Minneapolis in 1850, and when Nye's opened the door in 1951, we were here," Rainville said.

Rainvile is like many other Nye's other regular customers: All say it's an institution you can't replace.

"The food, the atmosphere," Brian Davis said. "It's just one of the old traditional places you would have thought was going to be here forever."

Brothers Tony and Rob Jacob bought the bar and restaurant in 1999.

Rob Jacob said business has fallen off over the years, and it's been hard to stay competitive.

He said the building is old, and the repairs needed would be costly.

Jacob said it's time for Nye's to quit while they are ahead.

"When you think of the east Hennepin area, you think of Surdyk's, Kramarczuk's and Nye's, and now one of the three legs of the stool is going away," Rainville said.

Many who consider Nye's a second home said they are optimistic.

They hope someone comes along and understands what this brand means to Northeast Minneapolis and does what it takes to keep it going.

Jacob said he won't close the bar down until next year, out of respect for the 35 employees who have been so loyal.

Jacob said it's all about the Nye's legacy--employees and patrons.

He and his brother have not decided what to do with the property when the bar closes.

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