BUSINESS

Harrison’s moves into Frank and Marlee’s old space in Oxford

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The stage where DJ’s and bands perform in the downstairs of Harrison’s. The owner decided to leave the Frank and Marlee’s sign for memory sake. Photo by Madeleine Nolan.

Madeleine Nolan
Oxford Stories
mlnolan1@go.olemiss.edu

You may have heard of Frank and Marlee’s, or maybe even Murph’s, or before that – Ireland’s Irish Pub. But now the building at 1210 Harrison Avenue is called Harrison’s, named after the street it’s on. 

Harrison’s Manager Jackson May reopened the bar Sept. 15.

“We’ve got a fresh take on the dive bar,” he said. “We’re adding a deck onto it. Frank and Marlee’s had a deck already, but it was small. The new deck is going to be twice the size of Round Table’s deck, and we’re going to put the swings back up that were on the porch before. But all in all, we kind of just wanted to add a new tradition onto an already Oxford classic.”

Harrison’s has faced a few minor challenges since opening.

“The biggest problem we face right now is continual development,” May said. “We’re just trying to push it out and grow forward because we have a really small size limitation. Even with all the tables and chairs removed, we can only have 170 people.

“So that makes our capacity really small, but as our deck progresses, our capacity is supposed to go up 200 people, so eventually we will be able to have 370, and with more modifications, we’re trying to get it up to 450.”

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The upstairs floor of Harrison’s with tables and pool table. Photo by Madeleine Nolan.

Harrison’s has the typical bar food menu, including burgers, wings, and a special of homemade mozzarella sticks.

“Before Frank and Marlee’s, it was Murph’s, which was famous for their cheeseburger with the fried egg, so we brought that back, and it’s called the Murff Burger,” May said, adding that being a manager is a challenge, especially with different people coming in, but the staff always makes it better. 

Bartender Lexi Yarbrough, a senior managerial finance major at Ole Miss, said Harrison’s is a fun place.

“I enjoy working there because all my coworkers are hardworking and dedicated, but also love to have fun,” she said. “We all have a good attitude when managing stressful situations.

“Harrison’s is unique from other bars in Oxford because, usually Thursday through Saturday, we have live music or a DJ. We also have games that other bars don’t have, including shuffleboard, pool, and beer pong/flip cup tournaments. We enjoy marketing to, not only Ole Miss students, but locals as well.”

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The only shuffle board in Oxford, here at Harrisons. Photo by Madeleine Nolan.

Harrison’s has created new deals since their opening.

“Every day, we have dollar PBR drafts and $2 Miller High Life tall boys,” she said. “Thursdays and Fridays, we do a burger, fries and pitcher of beer for $10. On Friday’s, 50 cent wings. So its our entire basket of wings that’s usually $12 is then $6. That has been really popular.

“We just started something new. Every Monday night, if you wear your jersey for whatever two teams are playing on Monday night football, whichever team scores, you get two-for-one shots, and each shot has a color that represents whatever team that’s playing.”

If you were a Frank and Marlee’s regular, you may have been disappointed when you saw the Grateful Dead door covered up.

“It was actually an accident,” May said. “We wanted to leave the door painted and also the Frank and Marlee’s piano to keep little pieces of Frank’s, especially because we don’t want the entire memory of Frank’s to be gone. But our contractor ended up painting all over it by mistake, and we got back and saw it. But there is obviously nothing we can do about it.” 

Another bartender, Brooke Bonura, a senior IMC major at the University of Mississippi, said Harrison’s is the perfect place to start your night.

“You can start off at the top of the bar eating wings and watching the football game,” she said “then come back late at night dancing downstairs singing ‘Dancing Queen’ and ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me’ with your friends.”

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The downstairs bar/dance floor of Harrisons. Photo by Madeleine Nolan

Bonura said Harrison’s has its own personality. “There is a reason it is physically separated from all the other bars on the Square,” she said. “It has the same soul of Frank’sbut it has this new Harrison’s twist with the largest outdoor bar in Oxford in the works.”

Harrison’s has an Instagram @Harrisons1810. It’s opens on weekdays at 5 p.m. and on Saturdays, depending on game time at either 3 p.m. or 5 p.m.

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