Here's my question: What took us so long to discover that splendidly sunny South Dallas was a cool place to hang out? Maybe we were waiting for a terrific place like Lee Harvey's to spawn a migration into the shadows of downtown. 26-year-old Rhiannon Baugh is a bartender at this rustic, flagstone hole-in-the-wall with a bonfire pit and picnic tables set throughout the large front lawn. Since pets are on the brain this month, Who's On Tap put Ms. Baugh under the spotlight and got to know a little bit about her, as well as Lee Harvey's "Dog Day Afternoon," held every Sunday at 1pm. The aspiring interior design student was happy to "spill the Alpo" for us.
RED: Okay, Rhiannon, how long have you been working at Lee Harvey's?
RB: Almost a year now.
RED: Where did you work before you got here?
RB: Nikita, the Granada, the Cavern and Tipperary Inn.
RED: What do you like to do when you're not working?
RB: I just finished a Shaolin kung fu class. I also have been playing the trumpet for about nine years. I'm part of the horn line in a band formed here at the bar.
RED: What kind of crowd do you get on "Dog Day Afternoon?"
RB: There are a lot of industry people because that's when our weekend really starts. We also get a nice mix of artists along with an affluent younger crowd and SMU students who like to kind of "adventure" down for a different kind of bar experience.
RED: I'm an irresponsible dog owner. Can I bring my untrained, 125-pound rottweiler to "Dog Day Afternoon?"
RB: No, that's unacceptable. The same rules apply just like any other dog park. It's just that we're a dog park with a bar.
RED: What do you do if one dog insists on getting a little too frisky with the others?
RB: The dogs are always getting a little excited with other dogs out there. It's no big deal. I mean, they're dogs, right?!
RED: Any particularly interesting or unique pooches that you can recall?
RB: We get everything from Great Danes to dachshunds, poodles, shitzus and boxers.
RED: Are you a dog or a cat person?
RB: Dog. Lee Harvey's has a stray pit bull that we kind of adopted.
RED: What's his/her name?
RB: Her name is Ruby, and everybody just loves her. She's a local celebrity. Stephanie (another bartender at Lee Harvey's) takes her on runs around White Rock and people stop her and say, "Hey, there's Ruby!"
RED: Your job doesn't include picking up after "Fido," does it?
RB: Uh, NO! We have scoopers out there, and a "barback" is always walking around keeping it clean.
Spending time at Lee Harvey's is about as relaxing as a bar experience gets, and taking Rover to "Dog Day Afternoon" is a great way to get to know new people. Rhiannon is the perfect bartender for the eclectic clientele at Lee Harvey's. She somehow manages to come across as spunky and friendly, while maintaining a laid-back quality that gives her a broad appeal. Head down south with or without a four-legged friend and treat yourself to a conversation with Rhiannon. Make it an even better afternoon and ask for her special Bloody Mary shot (The Bottom Liner) or take advantage of a variety of Sunday drink specials.