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Co-owner Tammie Shafer in the spotless kitchen at the Pine Brook Pub.
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The Shafers are trying for a family friendly pub environment.

Pine Brook Pub Wants to Make New Memories in Adams

By Jeff SnoonianiBerkshires Correspondent
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The updated bar side of the establishment. 
ADAMS, Mass. — Transforming one of Adams' most iconic watering holes is a daunting task but natives Tammie and Trent Shafer are off to a good start.
The new Pine Brook Pub in the former Chick's Bar & Grill is a hospitable, spotless, welcoming, family-friendly reboot of its predecessor. The space underwent extensive renovations before a soft opening in late November. The Shafers want it to be a destination spot again, just with a different goal for the customers.
"We want to be more family oriented, that's why we chose the word pub instead of bar or restaurant. Half the place is the bar area and the back is the dining area. We want you to come one night for a few drinks and the next night feel comfortable bringing your kids and eating dinner," said co-owner Tammie Shafer. "Chick's was a great place back in the day. I tended bar here when I was in college. There was so much going on with softball leagues and the fish and chips Fridays and pitch leagues. It was a bottle-beer bar. But times have changed and we want to improve on that."
Chick's was absolutely a beer drinker's bar. For decades it served cold beer at cheap prices while going through surprisingly little turnover. The Shafers bought it from the Knapps, who owned it for roughly 20 years. They purchased it from the Hanson brothers who bought it after the two-decade-plus tenure of John Senecal. 
The building itself has a rich history. Adams town historian Eugene Michalenko can trace it back to Prohibition days.
"I haven't looked back to see who the first people were to apply for a liquor license after Prohibition ended but I'm pretty sure they're the first ones. It was a bar right after Prohibition ended and you could probably have gotten a drink there during Prohibition," he said. "Chickory Zarzour (hence the name Chick's) originally had a store on Mill Street then he moved over to the Columbia Street location where it is now."
Given the history of the location and the fondness among residents for the "old Chick's," perhaps there was some reservation about buying the place and re-inventing it? 
"This was just the perfect size place, it's near our house on East Road so it just fit in the puzzle the right way," Shafer said. "We want to do it right. We are taking our time with rolling out the menu. We took a whole day to try to get our chicken wings the way we wanted them. We aren't going to rush a huge menu. During the week, it's more light stuff and sandwiches or burgers and then on the weekends we'll do some dinner specials."
Shafer's scientific approach to building the menu is no coincidence as she teaches high school science at Hoosac Valley High School. She plans on slowly adding items to the menu when they meet her standards. As for the famous Chick's fish and chips?
"Not yet! Not until we get it just how we want it. But we're working on it," Shafer said smiling.
Thursday's menu consisted of some standard pub fare, chicken parmigiana, burgers, nachos. And some not so standard, tempura-fried vegetables, charcuterie, and limoncello mascarpone cake.
Shafer said they have talked to local farms about getting produce come spring and will make everything from fresh when possible. 
As for the bar, they have about 75 years combined experience in longtime Chick's bartenders Jen Rose and Pat Albareda. They have eight mostly local drafts but still fit in a low priced national brand. The specialty cocktail menu is always changing and unique. 
They kept the pitch league on Wednesday nights and added Thursday night trivia and are featuring music occasionally.
If early reviews are any indication, the Shafers are getting it right. The all important online reviews are unanimously positive. 
Shafer plans on keeping it that way.
"We're committed to doing things right. We're not going to put anything on the menu before it's ready. I love coming here everyday and talking to the customers. We're really listening to them and have actually made some changes based on some of their comments," she said. "Being a teacher, even though you're around a lot of people, you're kind of in your own little world, so when I come here I love it."
The Pine Brook Pub is at 128 Columbia St. Check the Facebook page for hours and specials.

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Officer William Evans Laid to Rest in Adams

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
ADAMS, Mass. — U.S. Capitol Police Officer William "Billy" Evans was brought to his final resting place Thursday afternoon after the Northern Berkshire community paid their final respects.
Evans' funeral Mass was held at noon at St. Stanislaus Kostka Church and officiated by Bishop William D. Byrne of the Springfield Diocese. Byrne had previously been pastor at St. Peter's Church on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.
The funeral was private with family and friends, and a long list of public officials including Gov. Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, U.S. Rep. Richie Neal, state Sen. Adam Hinds, state Reps. John Barrett III and William "Smitty" Pignatelli, North Adams Mayor Thomas Bernard and City Councilors Lisa Blackmer and Jason Laforest and Adams officials.
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