Big Mug drafts opening

Get acquainted party to cut the ribbon for new bar

Published on March 29, 2014
Big Mug owner, Mario Sham, and manager, Mark Gaudet, practice a task they expect will be a welcome addition to downtown Summerside. The Big Mug hosted a get-acquainted party to officially open the new bar space, even thought regular custom won't begin for about a week while paperwork is completed.
Michael Nesbitt / Journal Pioneer

SUMMERSIDE – The Big Mug, in the Town Center Mall on Water St. downtown, hosted a private party Saturday afternoon to officially cut the ribbon for the new bar.

The bar is the realization of a dream for Mario Sham, former owner of the China Star restaurant that is next door.

“I went to Toronto. I went to Charlottetown; other places,” Sham revealed.

“The thing is, Summerside is a good place. I want to live in Summerside,” he praised.

Sham has three children, all born here, so the reasons for staying in the city are obvious, he said.

Sham is hoping his bar, when it officially opens within the next week or ten day, as licensing paperwork is finalized, will encourage other bars and establishments to open downtown as well.

“It’s no competition,” he rationalizes, because having multiple places for people to spend their entertainment dollars will draw more people, from outside the city as well, to provide more customers for all the businesses.

Mark Gaudet came up with the name, the Big Mug, to reflect the concept of the bar’s service, which will partly focus on draft beers.

The décor includes deep booths for parties of guests, about 16 stools fronting the bar itself, two pool tables alongside bar tables for pairs, and two sections separated for use of larger groups or combinations.

The window onto Water Street provides plenty of light in daytime, while the nighttime view should be inviting for passers-by.

Hours for the Big Mug are likely to be 4 p.m. to 12 a.m. on weeknights, extending to 2 a.m. on weekends. As traffic progresses, changes may be made to that schedule.