Huber's West End Store is today known as Champaign's friendly neighborhood tavern, maybe even "one of the last of the great neighborhood bars", according to the Champaign News-Gazette. It's a little spot on Church Street that has now been in business, in one form or another, for more than 100 years. A family-owned tavern, where just last year family matriarch Linda Cross led the century mark celebrations.
Huber's was actually started by a Huber, not a Cross, in 1918. During Prohibition, Huber switched to selling groceries to keep the doors open. That's when the tradition of selling penny candy to neighborhood kids through the side window started, and continues today. Huber's son took over and eventually it fell into the hands of Jim Cross in 1989, Linda's husband and a Champaign firefighter who'd always wanted to own a bar.
Jim added an antique bar with a marble top he and Linda scavenged from a closed bar in Paxton, expanded to add a dart room and video gaming machines, and added a sun room for extra seating.
Linda took over the reigns when Jim passed in 2015. In 2019, "the kids" - son Chris and daughter Melissa and their spouses - took over after Linda followed. Huber's remains a family business and proudly one of the last great neighborhood bars.