Lefty O’Doul’s has been a Union Square staple for decades. (Gabrielle Lurie/2015 Special to S.F. Examiner)

Lefty O’Doul’s has been a Union Square staple for decades. (Gabrielle Lurie/2015 Special to S.F. Examiner)

Lefty O’Doul’s plans final party Wednesday night ahead of closure

This week marks the bottom of the ninth inning for Lefty O’Doul’s in Union Square, as the iconic baseball-themed restaurant will close two days earlier than originally planned after a goodbye party Wednesday night, the San Francisco Examiner has learned.

The closure of San Francisco’s second-oldest baseball bar, which opened at its 333 Geary St. location in 1958, comes amid a court battle between two families over ownership of the hofbrau.

“They are leaving the premises, and everything is presently before the courts as to who owns Lefty O’Doul’s,” said Joe Cotchett, an attorney who is acting as a spokesperson for restaurant manager Nick Bovis in the legal case.

Most recently, a judge issued a temporary restraining order last week barring the Bovis family, which runs the restaurant, from removing memorabilia and other property from the restaurant prior to a hearing next month to determine ownership.

The dispute became public when Bovis announced earlier this month that he would be moving the restaurant to a new location after he was unable to reach a new lease agreement with the Handlery family, which owns the property where the restaurant is located.

The Handlery family filed suit in San Francisco Superior Court on Jan. 17 after learning the Bovis family was removing memorabilia from the restaurant’s walls in preparation for the planned move. The Bovis family then filed a lawsuit in federal court claiming ownership to trademarks for the Lefty O’Doul’s name, which Cotchett reiterated Monday he is confident will prevail in court.

“Any claim that the Handlery family owns the name Lefty O’Doul’s flies in the face of everything that’s been filed with the U.S. Trademark Office,” Cotchett said.

“There’s no question that the memorabilia inside Lefty O’Doul’s belongs to the Handlery family and will be returned,” Singer said. “The restaurant will close after Bovis and company depart and will reopen at some point after we do an assessment of what needs to be updated and fixed.”

A final celebration with two bands and resident piano player Frank O’Connor is planned at Lefty O’Doul’s on Wednesday night until 2 a.m. Thursday.

A final celebration with two bands and resident piano player Frank O’Connor is planned at Lefty O’Doul’s on Wednesday night until 2 a.m. Thursday.

The lineup Wednesday night is as follows:

5-7 p.m.: An OOM PAH PA band consisting of members of The Half Moon Bay “Sit-down” Marching Band, The Marin Italian Band, The Deutscher Musikverein of San Francisco, The Skyline College Band, The Chico Bavarian Band, The West Bay Community Band, The Marin Sewer Band, The Shriner’s Band, The Elk’s Lodge of San Mateo Band will perform on the sidewalk in front of Lefty O’Doul’s.

7-9 p.m.: The Irish Newsboys: Barry “The Fish” Melton, Jay “The Hat” Johnson, Kevin “the Scribbler” Fagan, Robert “Pipes” Loomis, Catherine “The Colleen” McSharry, Steve “Hey Rube” Rubinstein, Big Brother’s Peter “Four Strings” Albin and Dick “The Fiddler” Bright will play.

9 p.m.-2 a.m.: Frank O’Connor at the Piano Bar: Frank has been a resident piano player/entertainer at Lefty O Doul’s in San Francisco for the past 15 years

Mayor Ed Lee, Board of Supervisors President London Breed, former Mayor Willie Brown, Fire Chief Joanne Hayes White, former Police Chief Greg Suhr and a number of current and former baseball and football players are expected to attend the festivities Wednesday night.

Bay City News Service contributed to this report.

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