Ray's Happy Birthday Bar Celebrates 75th Anniversary

Ray's Happy Birthday Bar Celebrates 75th Anniversary

Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar, 1200 East Passyunk Avenue, celebrates 75 years of birthday wishes, cheap drinks, familiar faces and jokes of the day. Ray’s, celebrated as one of America’s top dive bars, will host its 75th Anniversary Party on Sunday, December 1, 2013, from 2:00pm to 4:00pm. Turn back the clock to the late 1930s, where you can celebrate the end of Prohibition, gas at ten cents a gallon, and Ella Fitzgerald serving up "A Tisket A Tasket." Owners Lou and Rose Capozolli will offer drinks at “throw back” 1938 prices (SELECT drafts, whiskeys, more). Lite up your free pack of (candy) cigs as you say hubba-hubba to our Ray’s authentic cigarette girl. Get flapping to live music and jukebox sing-a-longs. Blow out the candles on our special anniversary cake. Chow down on candy and snacks inspired by and originating from 1938. Dress in 30s costume for a chance to win best dressed.

The party will go all day, but throw back drink prices and complimentary food will only be offered between 2:00pm and 4:00pm.  For more information, liking Ray’s brand new Facebook page by searching “Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar,” or visit www.thehappybirthdaybar.com.


Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar has been hailed as “the best dive bar in the city” and an “everybody knows your name kind of place.” Whatever you call it, Ray’s serves up a drink, a joke and a story for everyone from every walk of life.

Anthony “Ray” Capozzoli opened Ray’s Bar in the heart of South Philly in 1938. Gas was only ten cents a gallon, a house would cost you a few thousand dollars and movie tickets were ten cents. Prohibition was just coming to an end, and segregation still plagued the nation.  Despite the times, Ray welcomed patrons of all colors and nationalities with open arms.  Ray had a great sense of humor, and greeted each customer coming through the door with “Happy Birthday!” When Ray passed away, his son Lou took the helm at the bar and changed the name to Ray’s “Happy Birthday” Bar in honor of his late father.

Ray's Happy Birthday Bar 75th Anniversary

Located within 40 feet of the famous Pat’s and Geno’s cheesesteaks, and in the heart of the thriving East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District, Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar welcomes thousands of  tourists and locals alike every year. Popular nights include Karaoke with DJ Lars on Fridays and local band performances on Saturday nights. Photos of music legends, autographed pictures of the Sopranos and collages of customers, friends and family, adorn the walls of this nostalgic neighborhood gem.

Other pieces of history include the existing but unused women’s entrance, and the original oak bar and the blue-tiled trough that rests under it.  Ray’s is most famous, however, for serving everyone a free shot on their birthday (21 and up, of course). This local neighborhood tavern has become nationally recognized as the top dive bar in the country, the “it” place to celebrate your birthday and the top place to swig back a shot at 7:00am! Recent mentions this month alone have included GQ Magazine and Maximum.

Ray’s opens at 7am every day of the year. Yes, this means beer and shots for breakfast. Why not? It’s ALWAYS  someone’s birthday!