A Place To Know Your Name

1 decade 7 months 1 day ago February 23, 2006 Feb 23, 2006 Thursday, February 23 2006 Thursday, February 23, 2006 4:23:59 PM CST in News

"The basement area was for the drummers, the traveling salesmen to show their wares, and since 1947 it's of course been the Tap Room, and we are now seeing a new business open up," Callaway County Historical Society's Barb Huddleston explained.

Fulton's historic downtown family welcomes a new family.

"It did close in January of this year and became available, so we purchased it at that time and went about renovating," building owner Rick Tiefenauer said.

"We're named Tif's Ugly Mug. Someone suggested Rick's Ugly Mug and he decided to include the three of us, himself, Brandon and I," explained Rick's wife, Elaine Tiefenauer.

The Tiefenauers work as a family nailing pieces together to build a place where everybody knows your name.

"I think we're gonna go with the generic Norm. Whenever someone come through the door, male or female we're gonna go with Norm, we're gonna call her Norm."Taking the old, and making it new," Rick said.

The dance floor used to be the boiler room, the pool room used to be the laundry room and the kitchen. And the back bar used to be the old coal bin. But some things will stay the same. There's been a long-standing tradition in this building to carve your name into the wood.  So when you come in to Tif's for a meal, you can also sit down and carve your name right into the table.

"It's been Rick's dream for probably 20 years or more. And this became available and everything just kind of lined up and we went for it," Elaine said.

"I came into this place and I didn't really fall in love with it, but I just thought it was so neat, that I would like to eventually own this and run it. I'm only 48 and I went ahead and decided to retire real early and try this," Rick said.

"Kind of made a little bit of a sacrifice to get this, and I can always go back to school," said Rick and Elaine's son Brandon Tiefenauer.

After two months and many coats of paint, you can see Rick's dream in the polished bar, stained barstools and in the faces on the bathroom wall. Another way the Tiefenhauer's have stayed true to the historical feel: They actually found the man who made the barstools for the tap room and had him make new ones for Tif's Ugly Mug. The restaurant and bar opens for business on Tuesday, November 1.

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