by Beth Stauffer

One of downtown New Haven’s favorite hangouts, Rack & Helen’s Bar & Grill, recently welcomed new General Manager, Scott Connally, into the fold.  Scott joins the establishment after working as an Executive Manager for Target remodeling the various stores in the area.  Instead of uprooting his family, which consists of wife Kristina and children Sam and Emma, and moving to Detroit, New Haven native Scott opted to stay close to home and jumped at the chance to work for the Anderson family when it presented itself over the summer.

Scott, a longtime customer of Rack & Helen’s, said “I’ve been coming to Racks for many years, my wife and I would come about once a week for date night.  I loved coming here.  I loved the food, I loved the service, and I loved the staff.  I couldn’t think of a better place to work.”

Since coming on board at Rack & Helen’s, Scott has spent a considerable amount of time learning every single job in the restaurant.  “My first day, I washed dishes and tomorrow I will be behind the bar.  I would never ask the staff to do anything that I didn’t know how to do or couldn’t do,” Scott told me.

Scott’s presence as General Manager at Rack and Helen’s may make long time customers wonder what other changes are in store for the much loved, long-time  fixture on Broadway Street.  Rack & Helen’s owners, Pat and Myra Anderson, along with their son, Wes Anderson, all remain very much an active part of the daily operations of the business.  Adding Scott’s role as General Manager essentially makes him the daily go-to guy at Rack’s, while freeing Wes Anderson up to run the other side of the Andersons business, JW Anderson Catering and Events.  Of course, Wes will continue to oversee the operations of the establishment in its entirety right alongside his parents, Pat and Myra.

When asked what he envisions for the future as the new General Manager of Rack & Helen’s, Scott said “The main thing is, nothing is going to change as far as the day to day business.  The service will remain the same and the food will remain the same.  Now, New Haven will just have the added benefit of JW Anderson Catering and Events.”

While talking with Scott about Rack & Helen’s on September 14th, something he said struck me as being very true:  “Rack and Helen’s is not just a bar in downtown New Haven.”

Indeed, in the days since then it seems I’ve seen just how very involved Rack and Helen’s is with the New Haven community at large.  Rack and Helen’s, and the Anderson family, recently provided the game ball at New Haven High School’s most recent and highly anticipated football game against Carroll.  You would be hard pressed to find a NHHS home football game without Rack & Helen’s presence, from providing the football team with a team meal this week to selling their delicious chicken dinners in conjunction with the Football Boosters.  Rack and Helens is also a consistently generous supporter of New Haven’s annual community festival, Canal Days.  In recent years, they have sponsored both the popular Kid’s Day in Schnelker Park as well as the festival shirts the workers and volunteers wear during the week of Canal Days.

So, when Scott Connally says that Rack and Helen’s isn’t just a bar in downtown New Haven, I really think he might be on to something.  Perhaps Scott said it best when he said, “Rack and Helen’s is a family, its great service, its great food, its great ambiance.  It’s a fantastic place.”

For more information about Rack & Helens delicious lunch specials, drink specials, or to see their upcoming calendar of events, check out their website at  You can also connect with Rack’s socially online via Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare.

Beth Stauffer



Beth Stauffer is a writer, speaker, Early Childhood Educator, and blogger originally from Columbia City, Indiana who is now a proud New Havenite. In addition to writing for, she writes about her childhood, her family and friends, and music on her own website, If you have an idea for a story for Beth, e-mail her at!




POSTED: 09/29/12 at 6:38 am. FILED UNDER: Business, News