M Uptown closed its doors today.
It used to be that the restaurant was right in the center of Gay Denver: across the street from JR’s and a couple of blocks from the Wrangler. But JR’s is gone, the Wrangler moved to Downing Street (to a beautiful location, by the way: if you haven’t been, go see it), and now M Uptown, the old Hamburger Mary’s, has closed its doors on 17th Avenue too. Less than a year after the closure of the Eagle and just a day after confusion over Broadway’s status, the grand old lady is gone. Almost eleven years after opening and a year after giving up its Hamburger Mary’s franchise, the rebranded M Uptown fell victim to what appears to be a downturn in 17th Avenue business.
The restaurant was a destination, rivaled in Denver perhaps only by Casa Bonita. Customers came from Trinidad, Laramie, Provo, Santa Fe, Wichita and Lincoln to experience Drag Queen Bingo or a Dream Girls drag show or a fantastic brunch with entertainment.
“My heart is broken into a thousand pieces as this was just not my place of business [but] truly my home. I will miss [it] dearly.” —Longtime performer and manager Jackie Summers (as mentioned on her facebook account)
M Uptown owners Jeff and Jennifer Kustok have done much for the Community and the restaurant/bar was iconic in the Rocky Mountain West. The couple plans to open a new bar in the same space, possibly in four or five months. Thank you for your work in our Community and thanks to an amazing staff and cast, past and present, including some of Denver’s finest in drag. We wish you all godspeed on your new journeys. We know you are heartbroken—so are we.