Saskatchewan man’s squirrel saloon has clientele going nuts

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WATCH: The One Star Saloon is open for business south of Saskatoon – Jun 13, 2020

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have undertaken projects at home to pass the time.

Dave Hunchak constructed a western-style saloon.

However, the clientele at the One Star Saloon aren’t people, they’re squirrels.

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“These Franklin’s ground squirrels showed up here maybe three or four years ago, and we hadn’t had them before, and they were quite bold,” Hunchak said. “So we started trying to feed them and last year they would come and take a peanut from your hand, and this spring they remembered.”

It took roughly 100 hours for the retired engineer to complete the two-storey saloon, which comes complete with paintings, a pair of tables and chairs, a piano and a bar.

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“(Being able to) measure out our piano and then build a little version of it, and make the cabinets the right height, then they look sort of proportionate to the squirrel,” Hunchak said. “They use them well too, like when they’re sitting at the table, it looks pretty darn good.”

Hunchak said the squirrels are fairly territorial and will chase each other off if there is more than one in the saloon at a time.

“They’ll have a little scrap, so there’s quite a few bar fights,” he said.

However, the resident constable at the Hunchak household keeps the One Star Saloon in check.

“We also have a cat, and he’s kind of the sheriff, Smokey,” Hunchak said.

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