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‘Thirsty Frog Saloon’ gearing up to open along I-75 

Live music and frog legs are on the menu for new destination that has housed a tavern for 40-plus years

A new bar and live-music venue called the Thirsty Frog Saloon is gearing up to open near the I-75/Ohio 725 interchange in a space that has housed a pub or tavern for more than 40 years. 

The new pub will be located in the former Dark Horse Tavern space at 209 Byers Road in Miamisburg.

The saloon is the brainchild of Dave Sommers of Huber Heights, who also operates the Truckin’ Bozo’s Bar & Grill in Millbury, Ohio near Bowling Green. Sommers is the son of the late Dale Sommers, a radio personality who earned the nickname “The Truckin’ Bozo” while he hosted an overnight show on WLW-AM radio in Cincinnati from 1984 to 2004.

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Sommers said he does not yet have a firm opening date set, as workers correct some refrigeration issues. Although the Thirsty Frog has an event page promoting a grand opening on Dec. 15, Sommers said that event will be postponed, probably for one week.

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“We’re shooting for a soft opening on Friday, Dec. 21, and a grand opening the next day on Saturday, Dec. 22,” Sommers told this news outlet in a phone interview. 

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 The Dark Horse Tavern shut down in April 2018 after a 12-year run. Its owner, Dennis Williams, blamed competition from nearby restaurants and bars. “People want new and shiny, and our business has fallen off,” he told this news outlet in June.

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Williams is leasing the property to Sommers and a business partner, Sommers said.

The Thirsty Frog Saloon will feature live music on Saturday nights, including but not limited to Nashville-inspired country acts, Sommers said.

>> PREVIOUS COVERAGE:  Why the Dark Horse Tavern reopened

The Thirsty Frog Saloon could open as early as Dec. 21, 2018. MARK FISHER/STAFF

The saloon will host a karaoke night, a trivia night, dart leagues and a Taco Tuesday night that will offer 50-cent tacos, Sommers said. In addition to traditional pub fare, the food menu will include specialty items such as frog legs, pickled pizza and a peanut-butter burger, the saloon owner said.

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The initial response from potential customers to the renovations and to the creation of the saloon’s Facebook page has been very encouraging, Sommers said. “We are very much looking forward to opening.” 

The Byers Road space has been a tavern for more than four decades. It originally held an Oregon Express location and later the Byers Inn Restaurant and Tavern.

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