With the closing of the very popular Gingerbread Man, the Shippensburg downtown was missing a great place to gather, eat and enjoy a cold refreshment. John Knutelsky Jr. was getting ready to switch careers after 26 years with Cadbury Schweppes. There are similarities in beverage manufacturing and the restaurant business, but nothing that would have prepared him or his family for the total challenges that this demanding business requires.
In May 2004, the Knutelsky family opened Knute’s Pub and Grill at the old Connie Bs bar that is currently Pague and Fagen Rental Center on Seneca Street. In September 2004, the business was moved to the current location at 15 West King Street, Shippensburg. This building has gone through several changes starting out as a very popular hotel, restaurant and dance club. After several years it was sold and transformed into the Shippensburg American Legion Post. In 2003 the American Legion decided to move out of downtown to a new facility in the Shippensburg Industrial Park near Dykman Spring. This left a vacancy in a downtown building that has a lot of history and wasn’t ready to be torn down.
Being a small university town gives Shippensburg a slightly different feel from that of its neighboring communities to the north and south. When the university is in full session, the student population is around 8,000. With the student body, the area population increases to approximately 24,000. This environment lends itself to a great opportunity in building a successful business.
Building and owning a restaurant wasn’t a life goal of the Knutelsky family, but owning a business in the Shippensburg community was. We promote ourselves as an upbeat sports oriented American cuisine pub and grill. We have banquet facilities to handle 80 guests, the NFL ticket, Final Four ticket, MLB ticket and several comfortable couches to enjoy these venues. We are well known in the valley for our Wednesday Wing day with our highest total day sale of wings nearing 5,000. We recently opened our second-floor deck, which prompted one of our patrons to say, This venue completes the service that Knute’s has to offer. This is going to be a hit.
In the fall of 2006, Curt Cramer, a high school buddy of John Knutelsky Jr., bought into the business. Curt and John have the same Knute’s philosophy: making Knute’s, the best part of your day. Come, enjoy a relaxing meal and let our staff pamper you.
John and Curt