by David Mendez
If you've spent any of your time and money at Hotel Congress's Tap Room, you've surely encountered Tom "Tiger" Ziegler , the long-beloved bartender who has prowled behind the bar at HoCo for 54 years.
Well, Tiger is turning 80 this year, prompting the good folks at Hotel Congress to throw him a spectacular birthday bash — and they're inviting all of Tucson!
From Hotel Congress:
ThursdayTuesday, May 28 at 5pm Hotel Congress invites the public to celebrate Tiger's 80th birthday! With 80-cent wells in the Tap Room and a birthday cake topped with 80 lit candles, all are welcome to wish Tiger the happiest of birthdays.
Tiger is the Tap Room. His constant presence is one reason the space has become so iconic over the last half-century. As a special birthday surprise, the Tap Room will be officially be renamed "Tiger's Tap Room" and a new, bright blue neon sign baring Tiger's namesake will be revealed. Shhhhhh! Don't tell Tiger!
Tiger started bartending at the Tap Room in the 50s, when it was the only bar at Hotel Congress. He served Coors and Budweiser for fifteen cents a glass, and mixed drinks for twenty-five cents.
"I just love the Hotel Congress. I love my ladies because they're not bothered by the men unless they want to be, and I like the university kids that come here - they're always ladies and gentleman. They're nice kids," says Tiger. "My co-workers are like a big happy family. I love coming here to work every day."
Presumably, Tiger isn't the biggest fan of computers or the Internet.
Either way, let's head down there next
Thursday Tuesday and show Tiger one hell of a good time in appreciation for all of the booze he's slinged our ways over the years.
For more info, check out the Facebook event created by Hotel Congress here.