We asked servicemen to help us pick the best bars near military bases. Get drinking—that’s an order!
NAVAL BASE CORONADO
Danny’s Palm Bar & Grill, Coronado, CA
Pool table? Check. Jukebox? Check. Gruff old bartenders throwing back shots with sailors? Check. Danny’s is a dive with a non-dive kitchen—the burgers will have you singing “Anchors Aweigh.”
The Haunted Head Saloon, Oceanside, CA
A pirate-themed dive with cheap drinks, a foosball table, and a pool table. Wanna play a buck a ball? Get some, Marine!
NAVAL AIR STATION OCEANA AND FORT STORY
Poppa’s Pub, Virginia Beach, VA
Elvis lives on at this rootin’-tootin’ bar and grill with a huge collection of Presley memorabilia. If the King ain’t your thing, the “Daytona” wings, dripping with sauce, will be.
TINKER AIR FORCE BASE
Jamaica Joe’s Billiard Bar, Midwest City, OK
An awesomely down ’n’ dirty pool hall with grizzled league players shooting five nights a week, this may not be the place to hone your Lady Gaga impression. Trust us.
NAVAL AIR STATION AND JOINT RESERVE BASE FORT WORTH
Humperdinks Restaurant and Brewery, Dallas, TX
This restaurant, bar, and brewery has big screens for game watching and a huge menu for face stuffing. It’s one lousy futon away from being home sweet home.
Scruffy Murphy’s, Columbus, GA
Take that, open-container laws! This bar’s outdoor area lets you soak up sun and suds. For the more vampire-y, the inside’s plenty dark.
FORT WAINWRIGHT AND EILSON AIR FORCE BASE
Kodiak Jack’s & Tony’s Sports Bar, Fairbanks, AK
Even when it’s cold out, bikini-clad, mechanical-bull-riding girls keep it hot in this saloon.
PATRICK AIR FORCE BASE
Lou’s Blues Upstairs, Indialantic, FL
If you’re looking for tunes, you’ll find ’em at Lou’s, where there’s live music and karaoke every night. Go during happy hour (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.) and you’ll also enjoy $2 brews.
DOVER AIR FORCE BASE
Irish Mike’s Old Town Pub, Dover, DE
Mike’s features a billiard room (home to a few pro teams), karaoke on Saturday nights, and a Sunday closing time of 1 a.m. Don’t tell the MPs we sent you.
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD 5TH DISTRICT
The Bier Garden, Portsmouth, VA
The Germans haven’t always been our favorites in times of war, but damn, they know how to make a sausage. This authentic beer hall serves more than 300 kinds of suds alongside homemade bratwurst, schnitzel, and sauerbraten.
NAVAL AIR STATION JACKSONVILLE
Murray’s Tavern, Jacksonville, FL
Attention, sharks: Hustle your way to free beers at the in-house dartboard and pool tables. (Or skip the games and just go for the $1.25 beers on Sundays.)
UNITED STATES COAST GUARD 17TH DISTRICT
The Village, Kodiak, AK
Mix it up with crotchety old-timers and flirty coeds at this friendly, low-key log-cabin-like spot.
Sharky’s Cabaret, Fayetteville, NC
If you’re not into hot topless chicks, you should still hit Sharky’s for the awesome free lunch—specifically, for what we’ve been told by a Green Beret-in-the-know is the best steak in all of Fayetteville.
NAVAL AIR STATION JACKSONVILLE
The Pearl, Jacksonville, FL
Shine your shoes, airman: A diverse crowd gets down to eclectic music at this downtown nightclub, which features half-price drinks on Thursdays and a giant tree in the middle of the dance floor. The one thing you can freak with impunity!
McCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE
Port of Wichita, Wichita, KS
Locals have been heading to this watering hole for 25 years to rock out to live music and kick back with cold beer. The Port has pool tables, six flat-screens, and an awesome two-for-one burger special.
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION
Rosie O’Grady’s, Beaufort, SC
A dive with live entertainment (meaning music—keep your pants on), local lasses, several pool tables, and lots of sports on TV. Not enough for you? Chow down on comfort foods like burgers, fish and chips, and fried chicken livers.
All Bottoms Up, Killeen, TX
Girls have been known to shake their booties on top of the bar at this down-home dive and sometime biker bar. Yeehaw!
Hooligans Music Hall, Jacksonville, NC
The self-proclaimed “number one music venue in Eastern Carolina” (way to set the bar high, fellas) combines legit live bands, cheap beer, and, according to one Marine, hot—hot!—women.
CAMP PARKS RESERVE FORCE TRAINING AREA
The Saddle Rack, Fremont, CA
Part nightclub, part country club, this hangout offers an activity for every night of the week: live music, dance lessons, a mechanical bull, and a “margarita chair.” Exhausted thinking about it? Hit the oxygen bar (it is Cali, after all) for an energy boost, then get back to dancing.
SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE
Parkway Grill, Wichita Falls, TX
Miss home, soldier? Parkway’s 44 TVs are tuned in to local sports from around the nation. Miss eating nachos? The Mexican food ain’t bad, either.
Cadillac Ranch, Fayetteville, NC
The Ranch is a country club, but not the kind you’re thinking, Smails. Put away your ascot and bust out your cowboy boots for some line dancing, cheap drinking, and easy flirting with local cowgirls.
EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE
Coaches Sports Bar and Grill, Rosamond, CA
Come for the slobber-worthy wings, stay for the comedy night, when pro standups from nearby Los Angeles will have you laughing—or drinking—so hard you pee your pants.
EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE
The Tank, Valparaiso, FL
After four beers, nobody is your commanding officer—this military hangout is filled to the brim with military men and the ladies who love them.
NAVAL STATION NORFOLK
The Birch Bar, Norfolk, VA
Ahoy, beer geeks! At Birch you can sip rare and seasonal craft brews by the goblet—or smuggle ’em back to your ships in growlers and kegs. Subtle!