A Bartender and a Pirate

Written by Sydney Fay

It’s not the places you go, but the people you meet along the way.


During my time in Stratford, Ontario there was one person who made me feel at home. Some people treat you like a best friend from the moment they meet you, and that is exactly what Curtis Pehlke did for me and my friends. From the moment we sat down at the bar in the Arden Park Hotel, Curtis became a close friend. He told us of his time traveling the east and west coasts as a marine biologist but found that bartending paid better money if you could do it well (and do it well, he did). During our time with Curtis, he endured many late nights as we closed the bar with him, and did not stop when a blood blister popped and filled his shoe with blood. His number one concern was always to be a friend and good host to us. On these late nights, we got to know some amazing things about Curtis and even got to experience his lovely singing voice when he invited us to karaoke at Molly Bloom’s. Curtis is a pirate in is spare time, and has also read all 54 Stephen King novels. He claims to read around 500 pages a day (we are unsure if he is superhuman or not). Curtis has three beautiful children: one son, who works with him at the Arden Park Hotel, and two daughters. He is an excellent Saying goodbye to Curtis was saying goodbye to a friend.

If you want to make a friend for life and meet a real life pirate, you can find Curtis giving perfect service at the Arden Park Hotel, or go listen to his lovely voice every Sunday night at Molly Bloom’s.


Thanks for making Stratford my home away from home!