Bartenders Adam Flohr and Maggie SweanyMay 29, 2020 02:50PM ● By Tara Spencer
Scriptown Brewery and Barry O’s Tavern
Maggie (or Margaret, “if I’m in a lot of trouble”) Sweany said she was essentially raised downtown.
“I was born at Julio’s in the Old Market (shout out to my favorite, Jerry.) I then went on to Jackson Street Tavern to work for chef Deke (also an absolute favorite; I will call you dad until the end of time.)”
Scriptown Brewery has been her main gig for three years now. “John Fahrer is easily one of the kindest hearts I’ve ever worked for,” she said.
The Old Market has a strong pull, though, and she also picked up a bartending gig at Barry O’s Tavern. “I’ve been extremely fortunate to work for Barry and Judy [O’Halloran], who opened the place in ’84 and have been going strong since. When you’re here, you’re family!”
She said college was never a plan for her, and the hospitality industry was fun and an incredible networking opportunity. “I have met so many wonderful people and I wouldn’t trade it for the world…Humans. Learning them, watching them, teaching them. I miss hearing the stupid, silly things about everyone’s day to day.”
During the coronavirus, she said she’s spent most of her time pacing. “Honestly, it has really affected my ability to connect with others; which is why I’ve tried to be more active online and help others. I miss people, for as much as they drive me nuts.”
She said she is also very into Animal Crossing now. “Add me. I’ll make you an axe.”
The Sports Hall
Adam Flohr, 34, started his service life at 15 as a busboy at Botticelli’s Ristorante Italiano in Sioux City, Iowa. If you do the math, that means he’s been doing this for 19 years. He’s currently an assistant manager at The Sports Hall in Blackstone.
His entrance into the service world was “trial by fire.” At 19, Flohr said he was managing a McDonald’s while working part time at HuHot.
“After a particularly horrifying table [at HuHot] (you know, that makes you want to walk out the door crying and leave all of your tips) my manager pulled me aside to reassure me,” Flohr said. “According to her, I guess I have that little ‘extra’ it takes to woo people.”
He’s been wooing people ever since. “It’s always a wild card in FOH [front of house], new customers are a ‘choose your own adventure.’ Each of them are different,” he said. “It never stops changing.”
When he’s allowed to go to restaurants again, Flohr said he’ll be going “Anywhere that has cheeseballs. I’m not a fancy boy.”
He admits that when things started shutting down, he panicked at first and stocked up on everything. “I’m way more aware of what I touch now. I’m a big social butterfly, and it’s really difficult to navigate around that lack of contact.” He said quarantine has had some positives.
“I’ve developed a love of making food for others,” Flohr said. “I’ve found a whole new appreciation for Kessler Whiskey…My stretch marks are growing, too.”
This article was printed in the May 2020 edition of Omaha Magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.