It wouldn't be September without the Greek Festival, and this weekend was one more chance to load up on baklava and Greek arts and crafts. The fest has really grown over the years, and this year saw bright sunshine and warm temps for a nice outing before the State Fair finally brings in the nippy weather next month.
This former bingo hall is in the strip on Two notch which backs up againgst the original Best Buy and has stoplight access at the Columbia Mall perimeter road. Interestingly, Best Buy itself has no access to this stoplight. It always surprised me a little that they didn't negotiate some sort of cut through for that..
Apparently Bingo is, or at least was, pretty popular in Dentsville, as this place is only a few blocks from this former parlor on O'Neil Court.
Note the phone number -- It's not PENNsylvania Sixty-Five Oh Oh Oh, but it's close.
For some reason I was convinced I had already done this closing and some time ago at that, so when commenter jonathan mentioned recently that it was closed, I searched my list and found out that in fact I had done the location before when it was Quizno's, and had *that* stuck in my mind.
J. Gumbos is apparently a Cajun chain with locations in a number of states with this one being the only South Carolina location. It was about 6pm when I took these pictures, and I was still unable to find a place to park without walking farther than I had time to do. I suspect this is a challenge for the spot, though there are certainly a good number of workers withing walking distance during the daytime.
Personally though I like spicy foods, I never really got into Cajun cuisine, though curiously, I did find a great Italian place in New Orleans once.
(Hat tip to commenter jonathan)
Commenter Mr. BO notes the passing of ANDeli's in Richland Mall sending in the last two pictures and noting that:
They were exhibiting several of the Signs
that they were about to close
1) Not maintaining regular business hours
2) Regular employees not there
3) Running out of routine things.
ANDeli's was actually one of the few recent stalwarts to move into Richland Mall. As you can see from their closing sign, they opened circa 2012, while the first shot above, taken on 13 July 2008, shows the storefront was vacant on that date with the original tenant being already long gone. The second shot is from 26 April 2013 and shows the place in operation.
(Hat tip to Mr. BO, obviously)
UPDATE 19 September 2014: Added 26 April 2013 shot.
One more empty storefront in Columbia's volatile payday lending market, this little cash advance outlet was in the same (Family Dollar) plaza as this Coin Laundry -- I'm not sure why the street address here is 1807 instead of 1735, but that seems to be the case.
UPDATE 17 Sept 2014 -- Oops, I misplaced where I took this -- it is *not* in the Family Dollar plaza, but a little further up towards Two Notch.
The chain is pitching it as doubling down on their Columbiana location, especially after getting extra space in the former Sears. However, they have had extra space in the Dutch Square store for *years*, and I believe if they had thought that store was viable, they could have re-opened the closed off spooky third floor (empty now except the hair salon and mens' room):
This closing pretty much puts the fork in the "mall" part of Dutch Square, and I would not be at all surprised to see the theater and Burlington closing their doors to the interior. (Office Depot already lacks interior access).
(Hat tip to commenter skysguy)
I noticed this summer that the self-service car wash more or less across from the old Blockbuster is up for sale. I have not been by for a month or so, but at the time it appeared the place would stay in operation until sold.
I don't find much information about the place online, but back in 2003, the USC football team did a charity event there.
It's always good when a place has time to plan and leave a thank-you to the customers before closing shop, as Tavern On Greene has done. Of course the phrasing does lend itself to certain very old punchlines, but it's a nice touch.
This place is slightly up the hill from Papa Jazz and just below Blue Cactus. It's a part of Greene Street without much parking, as I noted when I had to park a block away to take these pictures. Of course if you're walking into Five Points from campus it's one of the first spots you hit, so perhaps that evens out.
(Hat tip to commenter Midnight Rambler)
This laundromat was in the Family Dollar plaza on Decker. I've been to several of the coin laundries on Decker over the years when either the washer or dryer was on the blink. My favorite is the one in front of the old Target which has very active family management -- there was always someone sweeping, mopping or otherwise keeping the place tidy, and once the woman in charge was taken aback by my incompetence at shirt folding and showed me how to do it right (it didn't take, I'm afraid). This one I never made it to.
The marquee name of Coin Laundry seems to be more a description than an official name, so I'm not exactly sure when it closed, but I'm guessing within the last few years.
Well, I don't really need much of an excuse to visit Fernandina Beach, one of my favorite places, so when my sister noticed that there was an Amelia Island comics, steampunk, gaming and anime convention, , I decided to check it out.
Compared to the Charlotte Heroes Convention, Ameliacon was quite small. There was one exhibit hall, in the park on Atlantic Avenue which houses the municipal swimming pool, with gaming and presentation events in the town womens' center behind the park. It seemed to me also that the convention focus was definitely more on gaming, costuming and cosplay than on comic books, though there were some authors and artists there.
I certainly felt out of the loop on some issues! Magna/Anime character design generally hurts my eyes, so I was pretty clueless about one of the properties that seemed to be a very big thing Attack on Titan. There were a number of costumers basing their characters on that. I was also completely in the dark about what is apparently a very popular podcast Welcome to Night Vale, something the contest winning cosplayers based their presentation on.
I missed the morning presentation on Steampunk, having somehow convinced myself that it was in the afternoon, but did catch an interesting presentation by Joshua Johnson on doing video special effects on, basically, zero budget.
The audio for the presentations was the most problematic facet of the convention. I got the impression from listening to one of the organizers talk during the costume contest that someone had promised the convention a PA system and then left them totally in the lurch. I could follow ok during the effects presentaion, and parts of the Marvel/DC artist's presentation, but I gave up during the Homestruck panel where the panel were all using their indoor voices, and where I was only sitting in to try to figure out what Homestruck actually was anyway.
The costumers were out full force in the exhibit hall, and then at the closing costume/cosplay contest.
During the costume contest, it was announced that the convention would be shifting out of the fall and into February, so there will be no Ameliacon 2015. The next will be Ameliacon 2016 though they did announce a sequence of local get-togethers in advance of that. I certainly enjoyed myself -- I don't know that I would have driven that far for a convention of that size in a place I didn't have other motives to visit, but in the event, it was a nice trip.