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Popular Henderson dive bar, eatery planning new locations

Updated February 15, 2024 - 6:55 pm

The popular Henderson Irish bar and wing spot Johnny Mac’s is expanding in 2024.

There are plans to open a second Johnny Mac’s location at 117 S. Water St. in Henderson, with the hopes to get it open in time for St. Patrick’s Day, said Lucas McGinty, manager of the new Johnny Mac’s location and one of four sons of founder John McGinty. He also said another Johnny Mac’s location is set to come to Cedar City, Utah, by September.

The second location will go into the space of the now-shuttered Backyard Bar in the Water Street District of Henderson, he said.

The longtime Henderson establishment is expanding in part to “take the pressure off” the main location which has been open next to Boulder Highway since 1983, McGinty said.

“We can’t grow here anymore,” he said. “The kitchen can’t handle any more tables because every time we expand we just fill up more.”

Johnny Mac’s serves a variety of bar food, including sub sandwiches, pastas and burgers, although the restaurant is known for its pizza and chicken wings, McGinty said.

The Water Street Johnny Mac’s will be “significantly” smaller than the main location, said McGinty, at just under 4,000 square feet compared with 15,000 square feet at the original. He said the menu will be smaller but should have the staples of Johnny Mac’s menu.

The Water Street Johnny Mac’s is going to be more bar focused and feature live music because of the walkability and bar-hopping nature of the district, McGinty said.

“(Water Street) is going to be the epicenter of a great bar-hopping scene,” McGinty said. “As much as the touristy downtown Fremont and the Strip are getting played out, especially out in your local blue collar Henderson community, none of these people like to go down there.”

McGinty said the goal is to get the Water Street location open by St. Patrick’s Day to take advantage of the holiday. But he said he can’t commit to the St. Patrick’s Day opening yet because the Water Street location is still undergoing renovations and needs more approvals from Henderson.

More Johnny Mac’s locations are being considered for the Las Vegas area — likely along the 215 Beltway — to make the business more accessible to the Las Vegas community, McGinty said.

“A lot of the feedback I’m getting is, ‘Sure would be nice to not have to drive 45 minutes across town to come out here,’” he said.

But further expansion could take a bit of time as Johnny Mac’s is focusing on getting its two new locations up and running before any more sites are decided on, McGinty said.

Contact Sean Hemmersmeier at shemmersmeier@reviewjournal.com. Follow @seanhemmers34 on X.

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