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Michael McElwee Jr. grew up in Holbrook, NY, the son of a nurse and a Nassau County Police officer. By the age of 13, he began working in hospitality at Mulcahy’s Pub in Wantagh, a successful establishment owned by his uncle.


Mike graduated Sachem High School, Class of '93, and attended the New York Institute of Technology in Central Islip, receiving a bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management.  He met his wife, Mary Ellen,  while at NYIT and they will be celebrating their 25th Wedding Anniversary this year. Mike and MaryEllen live in West Islip and have three children Madeline, 22; Michael III, 20; and Thomas, 17.

In 2003 after rising to the position of General Manager at Mulcahy’s, Mike ventured out on his own to open The Nutty Irishman on Main Street in Bay Shore. Together with his partners, they would open additional locations in Farmingdale and Hampton Bays. By 2006 they opened TJ Finley’s in Bay Shore which is named after his son Thomas James (TJ) and his partner’s daughter Finely Rose. 2015 was a busy year as the partners took over The Penny Pub and opened Local Burger in downtown Bay Shore. Sayville Bait & Tackle was their most recent opening in June 2021.


Mike has been active in the Bay Shore community since 2003. He is  on the board of the Bay Shore Chamber of Commerce and a member of The Bay Shore Business Improvement District.


Mike is deeply committed to his Irish roots and is a member of the Bay Shore St Patrick’s Day parade committee. He organized and presided over The Bay Shore Restaurant Committee, which is responsible for bringing the popular event "Alive by the Bay" to Main Street Bay Shore.  This summertime series of concerts and street vendors brings over 10,000 patrons to local bars, restaurants and shops along Main Street.

Mike has always been interested in politics and government affairs. From 2019-22 Mike worked for Senator Phil Boyle’s office in constituent services. After Senator Boyle left office, Mike began working for Assemblyman Jarrett Gandolfo as a Community Liaison.

Michael’s hobbies include baseball, traveling, and local politics. He and his son Thomas are trying to visit every one of the 30 Major League Baseball stadiums. So far they have visited 13, with more to come.

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