Green Dragon Tavern & Museum

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Green Dragon Tavern & Museum, located in Carlsbad, CA, opened its doors in 2014 to celebrate, educate and preserve the stories and artifacts of our nation’s founding history by doing what Taverns of the 18th century did best – build community through shared ideas, inspired conversations and superb cuisine. The New England inspired architecture of the building, visible off of I-5 at Palomar Airport Road,  provides for an authentic east-coast feel and was designed as a replica of the original Green Dragon Tavern, once located in Boston’s North End, where many pints were shared and legendary moments of this historic era once took place. Inside, it offers a highly acclaimed American restaurant, classically elegant ballroom for meetings, galas and events and a free-admission museum featuring original documents, antiquities and educational exhibits ranging from the Pilgrim through Revolutionary War eras.

“Many of our guests refer to us a hidden gem, but this is a truly unique, inspirational and must-visit destination for all San Diegans who wish to experience a first-hand connection to early American history rarely accessible on the west coast,” John Lek who is responsible for all facets of business and museum operations shared with GB Magazine. “The museum intrigues first time visits, but the venue, service and menu keep our loyal patrons of all ages returning.”

The restaurant and event venue serve approximately 160,000 dining patrons, military service men and women, civic and philanthropic leaders, corporate meeting clients, social event guests and museum visitors annually. The museum currently hosts a collection of significant documents signed by over 15 signers of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and more.

Recently celebrating its 5-year anniversary, Lek’s enthusiasm and excitement has not idled since originally being asked to turn the vision of Green Dragon Tavern & Museum into a reality. “It is amazing to see how our community has embraced our concept. Since opening, we have been involved with supporting our communities, schools, military and more. As a board member of the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce, I am looking forward to becoming more involved with the education committee and being the Executive Committee’s liaison to the Military Affairs Committee to learn how we can better partner, support and be an educational resource to our military and community.”

The foundation has exciting plans to repurpose several thousand square feet at Green Dragon Tavern & Museum for new and rotational exhibits. They are calling all Patriots to support a fundraising campaign that includes a new membership program, sponsorship and recognition opportunities to help fund school field trips, senior engagement programs, rotational exhibits and infrastructure for their newly dedicated museum expansion space. The foundation would greatly welcome community support in the form of a donation, membership, or sponsorship to help expedite the expansion.

Funds raised will go directly to developing the exhibits, programs and curriculum. According to Lek, friends and partners of the foundation are loaning impressive collections of antiquities and artifacts that will complement the current collection and enhance the overall experience for their visitors. They have also partnered with local educators to ensure the curriculum and activities in development meet the core standards educators must teach to ensure field trips are not only fun, but support classroom education to the fullest extent possible. Their goal is to have every school in the county afford the opportunity to visit and learn about our nation’s history and civic education. Should you like to support this incredible effort, please visit for more information.


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Esteban Villanueva