Bear Trap celebrates eight years in business


Margaret Weber, owner of the Bear Trap Bar & Café in Riverside, knew she didn’t want to be in Seattle anymore. As she thought of new enterprises, the Platte Valley was an easy choice—Weber had worked at A Bar A Ranch while in college and recalled going to the Pine Lodge during that time.

The Pine Lodge went up for sale, but she missed her chance. However, Weber heard that she could probably buy the Bear Trap, and before she knew it she moved out to Riverside to manage the bar and restaurant.

“I didn’t want to be in Seattle,” Weber said. “Too many people, too many cars, too much crap.”

It was eight years ago she made that purchase, and it’s been “a trip” for her looking back. Weber knew she wanted to live in the Valley long term, but wasn’t sure how long she would own the Bear Trap. After tearing out the cabins in the back, putting in the stage, remodeling the house, remodeling the restaurant and bringing the popular summer WhatFest concert to the area, Weber realized she still has a lot of energy to put into the bar.

“I don’t know what else I would do,” Weber said. “I can’t be in a cubicle, I can’t work with computers … restaurants are all I’ve done for the past 25 years.”

Now an active member of the Riverside community, Weber feels comfortable and passionate about where she lives and cares about how it moves forward. For a person that loves to throw parties, the Valley residents make that happen in full, with active participation in any theme thrown their way.

Her special dinners and catering have grown popular in her eight years here, so it makes sense to celebrate the anniversary with a theme dinner—this time, an 80s prom party.

Weber got the idea for this theme while at the Encampment homecoming and decided she wanted to do the same thing, only goofier. There will be awkward prom photos, awkward prom slow dancing and only 80s music courtesy of The Flashbacks, of Laramie. “I have a weird affinity for the 80s,” Weber said, continuing the decade also fit because it was the eighth anniversary.

The special menu will be chardonnay chicken and beef burgundy with turmeric rice and vegetables and cheesecake for dessert.

It will cost $15 for dinner and prom and $10 for people to come after 9 p.m. on Friday, April 8. Those attending are encouraged to dress up, but it is not a requirement.


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