Harry attempts to drum up business for Grant's Tomb by publicizing a visit from Congressman Bimstock, a local politician running for re-election. However, Bimstock's opponent, the incendiary Lucille Potter, happens to shows up at the same time. Political squabbling among the staff and patrons turns into a free-for-all. Much to Harry's chagrin, the press are on hand to record every insult and argument.
90 year old Flanagan, the eldest patron at Grant's Toomb, dies suddenly. His final request is to have a celebration of his life by friends at the tavern. Against his better judgment, Harry agrees to hold Flanagan's wake at Grant's Toomb. Later, a serious dilemma arises when he learns that the planned ceremony is actually illegal.
A New York City health official arrives at Grant's Toomb with very bad news. One of Fred's taxi passengers could be the carrier of a highly contagious disease. Having potentially exposed everyone at the tavern, Frank and the gang are quarantined together. Unfortunately, annoying stranger Henrietta, who just stopped in to use the pay phone, finds herself trapped with them, too. Tempers flare as the quarantine drags on.
After a rock smashes through the window at Grant's Toomb, a couple of thugs show up to offer Harry protection from further vandalism, for a very hefty price. Not wanting to pay, Harry concocts a clever plan to trap them, but his scheme goes awry. Just when everything seems hopeless, Harry's "godfather" arrives to intimidate the thugs and save the tavern from a racket.
Joe, the Grant's Toomb cook, has gotten serious about his girlfriend Angel. However, he fears her authoritarian mother won't consent to her marriage to a mere cook. Joe persuades Harry to trade jobs for one night to impress his future mother in law. Havoc ensues in the tavern when Harry can't cook an edible meal and Joe can't mix a decent drink.
Harry's temporary waitress Bonnie reveals that she is pregnant. Bonnie has no plans to marry and won't reveal who the baby's father is. Harry and the gang decide to play detectives and work to uncover the father's identity. Later, they must find a way to bring the disparate parents together in a quickie marriage of convenience.
Meyer and Fred can commiserate; they are both victims of the generation gap. Meyer's daughter wants to drop out of Ithaca, and Fred's son is ready to turn his back on Cornell. Harry decides to intervene, but in the process, he ends up bringing the two kids together. After falling for one another, they decide to go back to college...together.
Harry receives a visit from his widowed and lonely landlady Jennifer Bradley. Jennifer soon falls for Harry's charms. After she reminds him that the lease on Grant's Toomb will soon be up for renewal, Harry exploits Jennifer's growing feelings for him by trying to instigate a whirlwind romance. Will he be willing to trade matrimony for the tavern?
Harry receives a visit from his gregarious old Navy buddy Sparky Schnauzer. Sparky convinces Harry and the regulars to invest in his land scheme out west. Later, Harry is dismayed to discover that Sparky is a con artist, and the New Mexico deal a swindle. Harry decides to teach Sparky a lesson by making him work off his debt in the tavern.
When their union goes out on strike over benefits that Harry already provides, his employees at Grant's Toomb find themselves in the untenable position of choosing between the tavern and the picket line. Later, with Joe, Mary Ann, and Meyer out, the regular patrons step in to give Harry a hand by taking over the open positions, but they only serve chaos.