Bozeman has changed significantly over the last 10 years. You might even say the differences in Bozeman from 2010 to 2020 are shocking. Once, it was a small ski town with a strong sense of community and a few choices for places to grab a drink after hitting the mountain. Now, with its ever-expanding suburbs, businesses and population growth, Bozeman is hardly recognizable. If you look hard enough, you can still find remnants of the ‘old’ Bozeman. A trio of bars unofficially known as the Barmuda Triangle is one such place.
Located at the corner of W. Babcock St. and 8th St., the Barmuda Triangle consists of three bars: the Molly Brown, Haufbrau House and The Scoop. They share a similar atmosphere while still maintaining their own respective uniqueness. Offering classic bar games and entertainment such as billiards, darts, shuffleboard and live music, these places are still popular destinations for the night scene. Meanwhile, across the street, a brand new set of three-story condos is nearing completion.
Growth is a beautiful thing, and to see Bozeman thrive as one of the most sought-after destinations in the country is a fact in which we should take pride. But with change and growth comes the inevitable dissolution of what used to be. Often, the things that are lost in the process of change hold happy memories for us, which makes change bittersweet. The Triangle isn’t just a series of bars set close together. For many, they maintain community and a familiar feeling. Once they begin to disappear, so then do those who patronize these businesses, moving to other areas that are better fit for them.
We’ve seen it happen before. Many felt the impact when the Zebra, a cocktail lounge, was shuttered in May 2019. It was like saying goodbye to an old friend after years of friendship. Now, the trend continues. The Molly Brown is up for sale for $10 million. While this doesn’t necessarily mean the potential new owners won’t keep business as usual, it could very well mean a complete overhaul. What could it become? A brewery? An upscale restaurant? Maybe a farm-to-table café? Will Bozeman be saying goodbye to another old friend, or will the Molly Brown maintain its signature feel and keep the Triangle whole? Is old Bozeman set to be phased out entirely? One can only watch as these things unfold. In the meantime, Bozeman continues to flourish and add new attractions for tourists such as hotels, restaurants and trendy coffee shops that appeal to a larger clientele rather than just Bozemanites. I, for one, am happy to see the growth and the bright future that Bozeman has to look forward to.