1 The term "bar" doesn't really do Keenan's Irish Pub justice. It's more like a megapub. The facts speak for themselves: 25,000 square feet, spread across four large areas, with 30 TVs, several stages and 1,800 people of all ages regularly packing the place to capacity. In the 12 years since opening, it has firmly established itself as a massive landmark in the heart of North Wildwood's entertainment district.
2 South Philly brothers Sean and Scott Keenan opened the much smaller original structure in 1999, making it another popular place for people from throughout the Philadelphia region to meet up. In 2008, though, they knocked down the neighboring building and nearly doubled the establishment's size with a huge new outside patio, dubbed "Angry Jack's." The outdoor stage, extra set of bars and rows of tables made the venue's size match its level of popularity.
3 Keenan's tries to cater to a wide variety of people, and to do so it brings in an eclectic range of musical acts. "Motown Mondays" feature The Sensational Soul Cruisers, an 11-man vocal harmony, soul-fun-R&B group with a horn section. On Tuesdays, renowned shore-area guitarist Mike LeCompt comes in for an acoustic show. Wednesdays feature six-piece party band Animal House, Thursdays there's a guest DJ streaming the latest hits and Saturdays there are both Irish bands and "Dueling Pianos," a Philly-based, piano-playing, crowd pleasing duo. Sundays feature a variety of acts, including the hugely popular cover bands Chico's Vibe and The Business.
4 The summer schedule here also is constantly packed with special events. There are nearly 50 grade school, high school and college reunions hosted at Keenan's, with a number of other benefits and happy hours as well. "We like to call ourselves the place where all neighborhoods still meet up," Scott Keenan says.
5 The pub's drink specials are always good, but the menu features a variety of food specials as well. Offerings include seafood, sandwiches, wings, pizzas, nachos, burgers and appetizers, with half price crabs on Tuesdays and Thursdays, half-price wraps on Wednesdays and half-price burgers on Fridays, among other deals. "Our food is a hidden secret," Keenan says.
Music: Sensational Soul Cruisers playing "Give It to Me Baby" by Rick James or "Rapper's Delight" by The Sugarhill Gang one night, to Mike LeCompt playing acoustic classic rock the next night, to Irish rock another night to all the latest pop/rock and party music on other evenings and afternoons.
Vibe: On weekends, holidays and special events, expect a sea of people inside and out, mingling with each other and loudly shouting across the room to old friends. People dance in certain pockets or by the stage, and others stand shoulder to shoulder at the bars. Everyone is dressed in either skirts or shorts and short-sleeve shirts, from the early 20-somethings to the 60-year-old couples who have been vacationing in the Wildwoods for decades.