Stolen heat lamps almost put freeze on McGillin's Valentine's Day weekend reservations

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Several outdoor heat lamps were stolen early Friday morning from McGillin's Olde Ale House, almost putting a freeze on upcoming romantic dinners at Philadelphia's oldest tavern.

The theft occurred around 1 a.m. at the tavern at 1310 Drury Street in Center City.

Owner Christopher Mullins said they had dozens of outdoor reservations for Valentine's Day weekend, which were now in jeopardy.

"This time of year, it's a lot of money when we're not doing as much business," said Mullins.

The staff needs to keep their outdoor dining area warm since it's a busy weekend for them.

"We have a good track record on love," said Mullins.

McGillin's is a popular place for couples to meet for the first time.

The tavern staff has books that document all the married couples they helped kickstart.

In it, you can see the names of the couples, pictures of them and read how they met.

So on Valentine's Day weekend, couples return to celebrate where it all started.

But with the heat lamps stolen, and outdoor dining a necessity during the pandemic, the tavern was in trouble.

However, McGillin's, which was established in 1860, has survived worse like during Prohibition and the Civil War.

Luckily, with some help from donations, the heat lamps have been replaced and those Valentine's memories can be made at McGillin's as scheduled even in the winter temperatures.

"This weekend, I guess they'll have to cuddle up a little closer out here to make the heat happen," said Mullins.
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