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Press Photos by Katherine Grandstrand Gayle and Pat Bren of Dickinson eat their entrees at Player's Sports Bar and Grill in Dickinson on Saturday.

A new 'Player' in town: Players Sports Bar and Grill opens in north Dickinson

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News Dickinson, 58602
The Dickinson Press
(701) 225-4205 customer support
Dickinson North Dakota 1815 1st Street West 58602

Every table in the house was filled, the staff was frantically trying to get food and drinks to guests as friends, family and community leaders imbibed and dined Saturday at Players Sports Bar and Grill's VIP night.

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Only a few days earlier, crews and staff were preparing for that night by cleaning, prepping and finishing the installation of the 47 flat screen televisions.

"Combining sports bar with plush dining," Assistant General Manager Kristen Ahmann said. "That would describe it."

After 10 months the restaurant will be officially open either Monday, today or Wednesday, depending on how the management team felt the staff did Saturday.

"We want to make sure that everybody is trained properly," head chef Tony Elliot said. "We don't want to rush it, if we're not ready, we're not ready."

The restaurant features standard bar fare like nachos and wings as well as fancier entrees, like Ahi tuna, he said.

Elliot previously lived in Denver with his family, but was excited to move to a smaller town.

"Combined my wife and I were commuting three hours a day to work," Elliot said.

Because the restaurant is independently owned and not part of a corporate operation Elliot, Rau and the rest of the staff have more leeway with the menu.

"If we wanted to change the menu tomorrow, we could do it," Rau said.

The bar features 24 beers on tap, three of which will be seasonal, and has a full menu of martinis and red and white wines.

"We just want to have all the uniqueness, the affordability and still have the overall wide variety to make everybody happy in this town," Rau said.

The restaurant strives to be something different not only for Dickinson, but for the region.

"It's all about, for us, great guest service and the great food," Ahmann said. "Definitely trying to set ourselves apart from things in Dickinson."

The management team, which also includes assistant managers Laurie Starnes and Cindy Fugere, and the staff will determine the success of Players, Rau said.

"It was like long-lost family members," he said of his team.

Players Sports Bar and Grill is located at 2050 First Ave. E. in Dickinson. It is open from 11 a.m. to midnight Monday through Saturday, with the bar open until 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. It is open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday.

Call 701-483-1733 for more information.

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Katherine Grandstrand
I graduated from Bemidji State University in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in mass communcations, from Columbia College Chicago in 2009 with a master's degree in journalism.  
(701) 456-1206
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