Through the Years
Founder John ”Jack” Bahrs, the grandson of a tall ship captain, and his wife Florence had their beginning in the Dutch Neck section of Newark, where they owned and operated a small neck tie manufacturing business. The family was interested in Highlands, and after a robbery and their silk supply and finished neckties, they cemented their resolve to move to Highlands. They purchased a small boat rental business on Cedar Street that they operated in the summer and went back to work in Newark for the off-season. In 1917, they purchased the beached houseboat at this location, moved the rental boats over, and started cooking up chowder. The rest is history! Jack, Florence, and their four children, John(Bud), Al, Ken, and Ruth, worked hard together selling bait, renting rowboats, and cooking up dinners for fishing parties that would come down on the train Friday night and pay $2.50 for room and board. The two-story houseboat had a potbelly stove and operated just seasonally. The houseboat structure remains as the interior of the main dining room and reception area.
From the 1940s to the 1970s, Bud and his wife Peg successfully grew the business to a year-round destination entertaining seafood lovers visiting Monmouth Park, the Garden State Arts Center, and the beaches. Famous stars such as Frank Sinatra, Joe DiMaggio, Ernest Borgnine, and many more enjoyed lobster dinners at Bahrs. In the early days, you could arrive by steamer or train when the Central Railroad of NJ came from Jersey City and stopped at Highland Station, just outside of Bahrs front door, on its way to Long Branch.
Bud & Peg officially retired in 1974. The Restaurant has been owned since by Ray Cosgrove and his son Jay, the fourth generation great-grandson of the founders. Together they have expanded the facility to include Mobys Outside Deck & Lobster pound as well as the original marina facility. Our family and experienced, dedicated staff have served over 12 million customers. Bahrs Landing is considered one of New Jersey’s famous landmarks as well as one of the country’s oldest family-run restaurants.
Bahrs Landing specializes in catering to large and small groups with friendly service, creating special memories for you and your family!
Bahrs is proud to support local charities. We like to think that we are an “anchor” to the local community along with our more than 100 employees, Bahrs provides many avenues for raising money and awareness to a variety of local causes.
Sample of Local Non-Profits we support
Hops For Awareness
Henry Hudson HS Scholarships
Clean Ocean Action
American Littoral Society
Sandy Hook Foundation
Ronald McDonald House
Jason’s Dream For Kids
Parker Family Clinic
St Barnabus Hospital
Food Bank of NJ
Twinlights Historical Society
Highlands Historical Society
Highlands Arts Council
12 Bars of Christmas coat drive
Next time you are in for lunch or dinner, ask us how we can help your charity.
Bahrs Landing is proud of being a good neighbor. We are happy to support local causes and we receive hundreds of donation requests annually. In order to review the many types of requests we have developed criteria and a procedure to help us best serve those most in need of our donation.
We are proud to support The Sandy Hook Foundation the friends group of the National Park Service at Sandy Hook. Throughout the years we have provided corporate sponsorship of the summer free beach concert program.
Twin Lights Historical
Henry Hudson High School Cash Scholarship awards. Since 1998, The Buddy Bahrs Grant has annually provided this cash grant to graduating students to pursue educational goals.
Bahrs Landing Giving Guidelines
Please review these guidelines which have been established to assist you with your request for a charitable donation from Bahrs Landing.
Bahrs will donate to non-profit (501-3C) charitable organizations that are located in the general Two Rivers/Bayshore/Sandy Hook area. Our gift cards appear in auction baskets at many fund-raising events. We are glad to have a presence at these events and are happy to support our customers’ fund raising goals.
A limited number of dining gift cards are available for select types of events. These requests may be made in writing, preferably on the organizations letterhead, 90 days prior to the date that the donation is needed. Please include the following information.
Contact Name and title at the organization
Exempt Organization Certificate (Form ST-5) – your tax ID number and the state where you are formally registered as a not-for-profit/tax-exempt.
Summary – a 200 word targeted summary about your organization, including what you do, who you help, and where you receive your primary funding.
Request – Your specific request(product or grant, the specific amount needed) and why the request is needed at this time.
Who will benefit – Who will your request help.
Your organization will be notified by phone within 30 days of the request if a donation is to be made. Please do not call the front desk to inquire.