Spotlight: Ivy Inn in Princeton, N.J.

I’ve been on the hunt for a laid back bar with live music for awhile now. Of course, I’m sure there are many to choose from in the area; but I wanted to spotlight a place that’s adored by its crowd, one whose atmosphere is as kick-ass as the bands who perform there.

Ivy Inn sits right on Nassau Street in Princeton, essentially in the downtown area. When I visited this Sunday to snap some shots of the stage, it was relatively empty — but I could still get a sense of atmosphere from the night before. The bar was quiet, a few people chatting with the bartender like old friends. I got a sense that the pub sees familiar faces each week, which adds to the magic of it.

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Ivy Inn has its own parking lot in downtown Princeton where music-lovers and beer-drinkers gather for live music and DJs. Though relatively small, it’s an inviting pub with friendly faces welcoming you as soon as you walk in.
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When you first step inside, you’ll see a pool table to the right for some drunken games with old friends.
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A corner bar with a few stools, this spot has a perfect view of the stage.
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The main bar is lined with chairs, and there’s a booth in the corner that could fit a whole group. “The rich history of Princeton, along with some wood paneling from a basement in 1975, makes each show at the Ivy unforgettable,” said the Seth Tieger Band, a New Jersey based band that performs here regularly, covering songs by bands from Bon Jovi to Paramore.
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On Fridays and Saturdays, live bands perform after 10p.m. “Even though the stage is the size of a postage stamp, the energy that can be projected from that little corner is incredible,” said the Seth Tieger Band. When the band starts playing, the people start crowding around, dancing and singing ’til closing time.
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You can sit with some bar food and a couple of beers with entertainment all around you. The local bands play.

From the words of the the Seth Tieger Band: “We love the Ivy because there is always a built-in crowd that is ready to rock…”

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