Water leak forces Ann Arbor bar to close before Winter Classic

Blue Leprechaun, local businesses forced to close its doors

By Will Jones - Reporter

ANN ARBOR, Mich. - Normally on New Year's Day, Ann Arbor is pretty quiet with students off on break and things slow down, but not this year.

The Winter Classic is a big boost for business with all those fans headed to town, but one small business owner is out of luck after a water leak -- leaving his bar closed for the big game.

Many downtown Ann Arbor businesses are preparing to cash in on the New Year's Eve celebrations and the NHL Winter Classic, but the Blue Leprechaun has been forced to close its doors.

"We have absolutely no idea when we are going to be open again," said Michael Gradillas, GM of the Blue Leprechaun.

They're still cleaning up almost two weeks after a pipe burst in an upstairs unoccupied office suite that literally put them and several nearby businesses under water.

"It was just complete shock," said Gradillas. "This place was dripping with water from every spot."

Cell phone video shows water on the floor and you can hear it coming down the walls.

"We have over thirty TVs. Every single one of them except this one didn't make it," Gradillas said.

Monday night inside the Blue Leprechaun, you could hear the sounds of industrial fans and dehumidifiers instead of customers.

It could not have come at worse time for this bar and its 30 workers.

"It is definitely pretty devastating to walk in and see all this," said Gradillas. "Again, right after Christmas and a lot of us have a lot of bills to pay and we got a lot of staff out of a job right now."

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