North Beach Bar and Grill celebrates 30 years with Ho Ho Holiday Pop Up

The interior of a bar decorated with christmas lights.

North Beach Bar and Grill celebrates 30 years with Ho Ho Holiday Pop Up

For the last three decades, North Beach Bar and Grill has been serving up delectable food with Caribbean flair to Tybee tourists and locals alike. Thirty years in business is a major feat, so NBBG is celebrating their success and longevity in a big way. Now and into 2024, the grill is hosting a series of special events to show gratitude to the island community that has supported and sustained it all these years — and it all kicks off with the inaugural Ho Ho Holiday Pop Up, which is taking place now through Jan. 12. 

A bar with many stools and a tree hanging from the ceiling.

When guests visit NBBG, they will be transported to a winter wonderland complete with thousands of twinkling lights and decorated Christmas trees hanging from the rafters. Over the coming weeks, guests can enjoy a flurry of festivities including Christmas karaoke, merry mixology classes, live musical entertainment, and a tragic Christmas story open mic, where participants can share their most harrowing holiday tales. There will also be the christening of a life-size manatee created and donated by a local artist.

A restaurant is lit up at night with christmas lights.

“A manatee is our logo; it’s our theme. And this wonderful young lady out of the kindness of her heart created this 7-foot manatee that she will be presenting to the grill, and we will be christening it. We will also run a contest for the naming of that manatee,” said NBBG owner George Spriggs. 

In addition to the aforementioned festivities, the grill will offer themed drink and food specials available throughout the duration of the pop up. Spriggs wanted to treat Tybee to a unique experience unlike anything locals had seen before while also giving back. To that end, the grill is promoting local nonprofits as a part of their anniversary celebration.

“We’re highlighting four of the main nonprofits that are a significant part of Tybee Island and the Tybee community. [They are] the Tybee Island Lighthouse, the Tybee Island Marine Science Center, the Tybee Post Theater and the Greater Savannah Humane Society,” said Spriggs.

Each nonprofit is participating in a tree decorating competition, which pop up guests will be able to vote on. The winning nonprofit will receive a coveted cash prize. Additionally, the nonprofits will host a special activity or offer a limited promotion during the pop up. The lighthouse team will offer children an opportunity to make art on canvas on weekends. The marine science center is offering free admission to pop up attendees. The Post will host several engaging events and the humane society will conduct a puppy meet and greet at the grill. 

A christmas tree is hanging from the ceiling of a building.

Chantal Audron, director of TIMSC, noted that this holiday pop up has brought these nonprofits together for the first time, and she’s appreciative of the opportunity to collaborate and celebrate with the other organizations.

“It was sweet to get together and laugh and commiserate. . . We never really had that moment because we’re always grinding. When we were decorating the trees, that was a sweet moment because we could tease each other and have a nice, healthy dose of competition,” said Audron.

She also thanked Spriggs for his help in raising awareness and uplifting these organizations:

“It’s a sweet moment that the grill can give back [during] this big anniversary year. We are so happy because it gives us exposure for a small nonprofit that’s growing. These kinds of events are great for visibility and exposure, so we’re really grateful to George for being our Tybee Santa right now.”

Giving back is a principle that Spriggs holds dear, noting that the adage ‘it’s better to give than to receive’ was something his family and community stood by. So naturally, when the 30th anniversary came about, Spriggs wanted to prioritize giving back.

“We had a little celebration at the beginning of our anniversary, but then [we decided to] continue that celebration through the year and focus on giving back to the community, making the grill available for the Tybee community and visitors to take advantage of. . . If we can create a more favorable vision of Tybee for those who don’t know about it, we will in turn benefit from it. That way, it’s not all about us. It’s about the place in which we find ourselves, a place in which we’re earning our living and doing what we do,” Spriggs explained.

A room filled with christmas trees and decorations.

That place is Tybee, and it has been good to NBBG through the years, despite the environmental and economic challenges that emerged over the course of time.

“Fortunately, the grill has always been in a growth mode. We’ve done better and better over the years. Certainly there have been hiccups without a doubt. Let a hurricane come or the threat of one. Of course, there was everyone’s favorite interruption, the pandemic. We made it through the 2008 economic bust, and it didn’t kill us. So I guess we’re stronger. . . We were able to recover and get back on the path of growing and growing. . . So business has been good overall,” Spriggs said. 

He credits his success to the commitment and tenacity of his team and their collective buy-in.

“For many, many years I’ve had employees who believed in what the grill was about and believed in what I was trying to do. We have a vision and we take stock of that vision. We believe in it and we just stay the course until we see the results. . . It’s all about moving to bigger and better heights, which is why we’re doing this Ho Ho Holiday Pop Up,” he stated. 

The pop up is just one phase of a celebration that will continue into next year. Spriggs has plans for a Valentine’s Day Pop Up as well as programming for St. Patrick’s Day, and even events that are specific to Tybee like the annual Beach Bum Parade.

“We want to make sure that in each case, we are presenting something and sharing a part of Tybee to the public that may not normally be recognized, whether it’s the 4-H center out here, or one of the churches, or the charter school system out here,” he added. 

Spriggs also thanked his patrons for their support through the years.

“We understand that in having a business, especially one that has existed as long as our group has, especially in this industry, it does not happen without the people, the public,” he began. “We commit to do the very best we can do. Every time you visit the grill, it is at least as good as the last time you visited. And if that was enough to bring you back, we will try very hard to make sure we exceed it each and every time. Just keep coming.” 

A flyer for a holiday party with an image of a santa claus.

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