NEWS, SPORTS, COMMENTARY, POLITICS for Gloucester City and the Surrounding Areas of South Jersey and Philadelphia

Gary Myers, of Deptford, formerly of Gloucester City
Gian Carlo Viglino, of Kendall Park and Middletown



Philadelphia, PA - After twenty years, there's no slowing down for Philadelphia's original hot spot for "dining and dancing on the Delaware." Cavanaugh's River Deck (417 N. Columbus Blvd.) is now celebrating its 20th anniversary and for the iconic property there's no skipping a (dance) beat. Philly's Screenshot 2022-12-10 at 23.09.29 famous "River Deck" is still rocking with a special line-up for summer 2023 that includes updated menus with new and returning food favorites, thirst-quenching summertime cocktails, big name DJs, Sunday brunch events, property enhancements, ever-popular theme nights - and the return of decades old traditions that made the deck famous.

Long before Spruce Street Harbor Park, Morgan’s Pier and Liberty Point were even a blip of an idea, the big names on the waterfront were Chart House, Dave and Buster's, Rock Lobster and yes, the iconic Kathmandu - where two former co-workers would reunite and start the seeds of friendship that would lead to a new hospitality group with restaurants across the city.

Kenneth Hutchings and Patrick Pawliczek had worked together in the early 90s at Cavanaugh's University City, when it was owned then by Pawliczek's grandfather at the time. The duo went their separate ways on to other jobs, until they reconnected at Katmandu in the early 2000s with Hutchings as the General Manager and Pawliczek as the Chef. The two partnered up and bought the property, closed Katmanu and reopened it as Cavanaugh's River Deck in summer of 2003. (It was a big year on the waterfront as the Moshulu also would reopen in its new home at the opposite side of the waterfront.)

Once open, Cavanaugh's became the go-to spot for dancing and DJs, live entertainment, dinner with a view, mug nights, theme entertainment and much more. Cavanaugh's would see hundreds of thousands of people through its doors as the years went by - and while time may have sped forward, Cavanaugh's has remained consistently one of the top places to draw in the crowds on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. No matter the year or the decade, Cavanaugh's has remained a go-to spot for new generations and guests in their 20s, 30s and 40s. In fact, for the owners, the line on some weekend nights gives them a huge touch of nostalgia as the line is just as long (if not longer) than when they first opened two decades ago.

"Twenty years ago this summer Ken and I decided to go into business together and we have never looked back," said Pawliczek. "We used to say it was fate that brought us together at Katmandu. We knew we wanted to create our own brand with Cavanaugh's River Deck at the time - but little did we know what a big hit it would be. We certainly didn't know we would be opening more Cavanaugh's down the road. In 2008, we debuted the original Rittenhouse location. In 2013, exactly ten years after the grand opening of River Deck, we took over and opened Cavanaugh's Headhouse. In 2022, we just grand opened the new Cavanaugh's Rittenhouse after we moved down the block.  It has been a crazy and wild ride for twenty years - with no signs of slowing down. We are so thankful to keep on doing what we love for all this time. The customers, the staff, the community - we appreciate all the support and patronage."

When asked for the secret to their success, Pawliczek said, "It all starts by knowing and keeping to our vision and knowing what our audience likes. We want to be true to them and continue to deliver. We were aiming to be uncomplicated, pure simple fun, affordable and reliable. When you walk through our doors we want you to have a great time with friends, family and co-workers - and give an everyman option where you are dancing the night away, watching sports or taking in the views of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. We evolve but we are here for the marathon - slow and steady and being around for decades vs. aiming to be a flash in the pan and the new shiny thing in town. Over twenty years of course you have to adapt but that means new young fresh faces on our team and their new ideas, keeping up on new DJs and entertainment, evolving the events, but through it all keeping consistent and making sure everything fits into our grand plan."

For the 20th anniversary season the two owners are following their winning formula - with time honored traditions and events, long-time favorite dishes and crowd-pleasing drinks. They are mixing it up with some modern updates with help from their team - but the line-up is everything you have come to know and love about River Deck and the Cav's brand - with some new surprises sprinklined in the mix (but not TOO many).


Wednesdays - Mug Night

One of the longest running traditions is Mug Night - dating back to sometime in the 2000s - where customers would buy a mug for five bucks and get refills on beer for a buck. Two decades later, mug night is still one of the best deals in town at $5 mugs STILL and refills are now $3, plus the addition of $5 candy apple shots, and $5 Absolut Wild Berry drinks. Mug night is every Wednesday 9:00pm to 12:00am, (open until 2am) with a different DJ every Wednesday.

Thursday - Live Band Karaoke

Feel like the rockstar that you are! New this season, Cavanaugh’s River Deck presents live band karaoke on Thursday nights! Starting at 9:00pm Tony the Drummer hosts with his full band setup. You’re the star of the show as you take the stage for a very special night of great, and not so great, live music on the River. $5 cover, 2 Moods Seltzer specials until 12:00am.

Fridays - On Deck

Fridays at River Deck have kept the waterfront vibing for many, many years. This is the night Cavanaugh's is known for having some of the hottest DJs in town. The idea is to start the weekend strong - and bring in the very best. Recent names have included Menace Cartel, Chelsea Lee, Engine #9, Tonka and Dj Freezie. Coming up, Mr. Hollywood DJ will be ON DECK on Friday, June 30th for the start of the long-holiday Independence Day weekend. Friday specials include $4 Bud and Bud Light Cans to pre-game from 10:00pm to Midnight. Come early.

Saturdays - Slay Saturdays

It doesn't matter if it's 2003, 2013 or 2023, Slay Saturdays are where it's at for Birthday and Bachelorette parties, big lights, big sound, big beats and weekly changing DJs. The huge dancefloor is calling your name - and there's a free guest list on Instagram. Specials include $4 Miller Lite cans 10:00pm to Midnight.

Sundays - Island Vibes

Before Instagram and TikTok, before anyone even knew what the word vibe meant, Cavanaugh's River Deck was the place to be on Sundays for reggae, soca, afrobeats and more. Get down with The Party Alliance, doors 7:00pm and free admission before 8:00pm. Runs until 2:00am.

Fireworks - July 1st and 2nd

Cavanaugh's River Deck is where the red, white, blue light up the sky for Independence Day Weekend. Get the very best views on the water for fireworks on both sides - from Penn's Landing and from Rivers Casino.

July 3rd Pre-Party

One of the biggest and best parties of the year is on July 3rd. Everyone is off from work and the Deck is rolling. This year, the annual party is 6pm - 2am, DJ at 9pm, NO COVER before 10:00pm! Drink Specials: Miller Lite cans $4, 2 Moods Seltzer $8, Washington Apple pop shots $5.


For 2023, look for a new twist on the ever-popular Sunday brunch parties.

Drag Brunches -

Sunday, June 25th - Doors open 11am
Pride Drag Brunch on the River
with Brittany Lynn and the Philly Drag Mafia

Sunday, July 30th - Doors open 11am
Drag Brunch on the River
with Brittany Lynn and the Philly Drag Mafia

Sunday, August 20th - Doors open 11am
Drag Brunch on the River
with Brittany Lynn and the Philly Drag Mafia

Cavanaugh's River Deck first "Drag Brunch on the River," will take place on June 25th, with dates in July (30th) and August (20th). This event combines two of the best things in life: delicious brunch food and fabulous drag performances! Enjoy a scenic view of the river while sipping mimosas and indulging in some tasty bites. And of course, the drag queens will be serving up their best performances to entertain you. Get your tickets now at and don't miss out on this one-of-a-kind event!

$25 per person includes admission and brunch buffet with breakfast/brunch favorites
$50 per person includes admission, brunch buffet and two hour mimosas
Tables for 2 - 6 guests starting at $100

Yappy Brunch

Sunday, July 9th - Doors open 11am
Sunday, August 13th - Doors open 11am

This event is ONLY $25 and includes brunch buffet AND two hour mimosas, the best deal in the city. Bring your well behaved pup - DJ will be spinning (but not too loud)

The day will have chill vibes with the best backdrop in the city. Some light tunes will set the mood and all the pups will keep you smiling. No pup, no problem! This is a day for dog owners and dog lovers. If you just want to give all the pets there will plenty of grateful pups to go around. We'll also have plenty of water and treats on hand for the doggos. Get your tickets now at

Male Revue Brunch - Big Decks

Sunday, July 23 - Doors open 11am
Sunday, August 27 - Doors open 11am

Get ready for an electrifying and unforgettable experience at the Male Revue Brunch! This is the perfect opportunity to let loose, have fun, and indulge in a scrumptious brunch menu while being entertained by our talented and handsome male performers. Perfect for birthday and bachelorette parties, everyone is welcome! Get your tickets now at

$25 per person includes admission and brunch buffet with breakfast/brunch favorites
$50 per person includes admission, brunch buffet and two hour mimosas
Tables for 2 - 6 guests starting at $100

20th Anniversary Party

Please stay tuned and visit the website and Instagram for news of a 20th Anniversary Party - information coming soon!


Cavanaugh's River Deck is walk-in seating, no reservations. For the food menu look for casual bar bites, Philly staples, customer favorites - and yes those famous wings in Cavanaugh’s own boozy buffalo sauce.

Deck Starters -

Pretzel Minis
Homemade Beer Cheese 12.99

Cheesesteak Spring Rolls
Fried Onions, American Cheese, Sriracha Ketchup 14.99

Breaded Chicken Tenders
honey mustard or BBQ 13.99
Add tossed buffalo style with celery, carrots and blue cheese 2.00

Bangin’ Shrimp
Crispy shrimp tossed in our sweet and spicy bang bang sauce 14.99

Cav’s Famous Wings
Choice of our famous sweet and spicy Cav’s sauce, mild, hot, or 3rd degree, celery, carrots & blue cheese 11.99/16.99

Grilled Chicken Tenders
served with Watermelon BBQ sauce 13.99

French Fry Boat
Old Bay & Cheese add 2.00 | bacon & cheese add 2.00

Mozzarella Sticks
Served with Marinara Sauce 12.99

Nachos with Grilled Chicken
Fresh tortilla chips, salsa, cheese, jalapenos and sour cream 16.99

Salads -

Summer Salmon Salad
Fresh seared salmon, spring mix, berries and raspberry vinaigrette 15.99

Watermelon & Fresh Berry Salad
Fresh mint, goat cheese, pineapple vinaigrette 12.99

Classic Chicken Caesar
Grilled Chicken, Romaine, Caesar Dressing, Parmesan 14.99

Sandwiches and Pasta:

Chicken Caesar
Soft Tortilla, Grilled Chicken, Romaine, Parmesan, & Tangy Dressing 14.99

Grilled Chicken BLT
Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, Cheddar Cheese 14.99

Spicy BBQ Grilled Chicken
Fried Onions, 3 Cheeses, Fried Jalapenos, and Tangy BBQ Sauce 14.99

Philly Cheese Steak
American Cheese and Fried Onions 14.99

Cav's Chicken Cheese Steak
American Cheese and Fried Onions 14.99

Short Rib Grilled Cheese
Tender short rib with 3 cheeses on Texas toast 14.99

Cajun Tortellini Alfredo
with choice of grilled chicken, salmon or short rib 19.99

Tacos (3 per order) & Quesadillas -
Chipotle Chicken Tacos
Shredded Lettuce, Cheese, Fresh Pico de Gallo 13.99

Bangin’ Shrimp Tacos
Shredded Lettuce, Fresh Pico de Gallo, and Bang Bang Sauce 14.99

Chicken Quesadilla
grilled chicken, 3 cheeses, and pico de gallo, served with sour cream 13.99

Burgers (served with lettuce, tomato, on the side, with French Fries) -

Cav's Burger
Bacon, Cheddar, Grilled Onions, Cav’s Sauce 15.99

Black Bean or Beyond
Caramelized Onions, Roasted Peppers, Pepper Jack 14.99

Bacon Blue
Crispy Bacon, Crumbled Blue Cheese 14.99

Dessert -

with Chocolate sauce 6.99

Cocktails -

Grapefruit Gusher
Olmeca Altos Tequila, Triple Sec, Sour Mix and a Lime

Forever 21
Pinnacle Tropical Punch Vodka, Grenadine, Red Bull

Peach Power
Absolut Vodka, Peach Schnapps, Lime, Pineapple, Cranberry

Mules -

Moscow Mule
Stateside Vodka, Ginger Beer, & Lime

Irish Orange Mule
Jameson Orange, Ginger Beer, & Lime

Watermelon Mule
Absolut Vodka, Watermelon Pucker, Ginger Beer & Lime

Buckets -

Blue Hawaiian
Malibu Coconut Rum, Pineapple Juice, Blue Curacao

Starburst Soda
Whipped Vodka, Watermelon Pucker, Sour Mix, Soda water

Grape Gatorade
Grape Vodka, Blue Curaçao, Grenadine, Sour Mix, Splash of Cranberry

Cherry Crush
Pinnacle Cherry Vodka, Grenadine, Cranberry, Soda water

Raspberry Lemonade
Pinnacle Raspberry Vodka, Raspberry Liqueur, Lemonade, Sprite

Blue Electric Water
Pinnacle Blueberry Vodka, Blue Curaçao, Lemonade, Sprite

Domestics -

Bud Light
Bud Light Lime/Orange
Michelob Ultra
Miller Lite
Yuengling Lager

Cider -

Angry Orchard
Downeast Original

Local -

Yards Philly Standard
Victory Summer Love
Victory Pale Ale
Yards Philadelphia Pale Ale


Evil Genius Adulting
Goose Island IPA

Imports -

Corona Light
Guinness Extra Stout
Heineken Light
Red Stripe

Summer Favorites -

21st Amendment Hell or High Watermelon
Leinenkugel Summer Shandy
Twisted Tea
Kona Big Wave

Seltzers -

White Claw Black Cherry
White Claw Mango

Vodka Seltzers -

Stateside Black Cherry
Stateside Orange
Surfside Iced Tea
Surfside Lemonade
2 Moods Thrill
2 Moods Chill


Cavanaugh’s River Deck was the original floating beer garden with stunning views of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge. For twenty years, the best seat on the river is to sit at the lower deck bar and sip on your Cherry Crush or Blue Hawaiian while gazing at the Bridge lights. To this day, you can still soak up that iconic summertime scenery from the lower deck.

Hutchings asked, “Can you really ever get enough of the Ben Franklin Bridge view at night with the moonlight overhead? I certainly can’t. I’ll be taking it in for another 20 years.”

On top of the lower deck and the main bar on the lower level, the deck also boasts other levels that include a main dance area, stage, multiple side and small bars, and two giant covered spaces for dancing, dinner and private events.


Back in 2007, Hutchings told WHYY the secret to success of the waterfront movement was to bring in more activities, more restaurants and more bars to make a community and increase walkability. He wanted to create the village to bring the crowds down but also to keep them down here.

Today, 20 years later, the waterfront boasts dozens of things to do, eat and drink - with Cavanaugh’s River Deck nestled in between Rivers Casino, Craft Hall, Dave and Buster’s, Cherry Street Pier, French Toast Bites, Rita’s, The Garden, Race Street Pier, Morgan’s Pier, Liberty Point, Independence Seaport, Spruce Street Harbor Park and Summer Fest, Chickie’s and Pete’s, Rope and Anchor, Moshulu, and much more. This July, Pixar Putt will open at the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing and bring in even more foot traffic.

Following the pandemic, tourists are back in elevated numbers on the waterfront - and they still want the same things they wanted 20 years ago - just more of them. Cue up another two decades of bucket cocktails, cheesesteaks, fish tacos, fireworks over the water, and yes, a great place for a fun night of dining and dancing on the Delaware.


Hours for the 2023 summer season are:
Wednesday to Friday, 4:00pm to 2:00am
Saturday and Sunday, 11:30am to 2:00am -
unless early open for theme brunches
Select theme brunches are Sundays starting at 11:00am

For more about Cavanaugh's River Deck menus, events, drink specials and more, visit and follow @cavsriverdeck on Instagram, TikTok and Facebook.