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Archive for March, 2011

Al-Amir, 7001 Saint Andrews Road: early March 2011   11 comments

Posted at 11:58 pm in restaurants

The closing for The Devine Street Al-Amir was the first one I ever posted on this blog. I also did one for the Sparkleberry Crossing location, and this one makes three.

It's a shame because I really like the food at Al-Amir -- the Damascus bread, tabouli, hummus and falafel are all very good. Luckily, they still have locations on Main Street by Moe's and at Sandhill in the old Shane's Rib Shack location.

This closing had a very fast turn-around. I know I ate at this Al-Amir sometime in February, and now it is not only closed, but re-opened as a burger and pizza place called Stinger's.

(Hat tip to commenter E.J.)

Written by ted on March 20th, 2011

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G-E-X Membership Department Store / Intertec Data Systems / Home Gold Financial / Phar-Mor / Home Quarters Warehouse / Blue Cross Blue Shield / Palmetto GBH, 2340 Broad River Road: 1973   39 comments

Posted at 11:35 pm in stores

I never heard G-E-X pronounced Gee-Eee-Eks as the spelling here would imply. It was always just "Gex" to rhyme with "Vex". Not that I heard about it that often. Given the 21 Dec 1969 phonebook listing (ie: for 1970) above, it sounds like it was a Costco or Sam's before its time -- certainly we did not have a membership, and I never went with anyone who did. (There are some pictures of the membership cards here.)

The building (behind Applebee's just North of I-20) is certainly massive, and it seems to have had a department for everything, including groceries and meat, which really makes it sound ahead of its time. Wikipedia says G-E-X was another label for G.E.M the Government Employees Mart and that the electronics department eventually morphed into Circuit City by way of Ward's. The December 1972 phonebook is the last one to list the Columbia G-E-X which meshes with Wikipedia's claim that the chain went under "during the discount store shakeout of 1973".

After G-E-X the spot seems to have been a number of different operations including Home Quarters and Blue Cross. In fact, LoopNet says Blue Cross has a lease on the whole building that lasts until September 2012. Currently the building seems to be empty, with the last branding on the street sign as Palmetto GBH which seems to be some sort of Medicare related operation (their sign is still on the storefront in the LoopNet listing).

UPDATE 21 March 2011: Added "Intertec Data Systems" & "Phar-Mor" to the post title. Those apparently closed in the early 1980s and 3 October 1992 respectively. (Also fixed spelling of Applebee's..)

UPDATE 6 April 2011: Added the 1970 Bellsouth Yellow Pages ad for the pharmacy department (which apparently was open to the general public).

Written by ted on March 18th, 2011

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Patterson's Texaco / Tires Unlimited, 2053 Two Notch Road: around 2009   5 comments

Posted at 12:33 am in business,stores

I don't know anything about Tires Unlimited other than that they sold used tires and were located in a very neat little building that was obviously once a service station.

It appears to be of an early '60s vintage, similar in some ways to the old Bill DuBose 66 station on Covenant.

The building now seems to be an impromptu parking lot for Blue Ribbon, and looks like it could use some TLC.

UPDATE 18 March 2011: Added "Patterson's Texaco" to the post title based on the comments.

Written by ted on March 18th, 2011

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La Fogata, 498 Town Center Place #1: Early March 2011   27 comments

Posted at 12:14 am in restaurants

I first wrote about this building in a closing for The Village Bistro in August 2009. After that operation closed, La Fogata Mexican Restaurant set up shop, lasting at least a year, and apparently closing around the start of March this year.

I never managed to make it to La Fogata though I do like Mexican food. It's just a good ways from Forest Acres, and if I'm not in the mood for Moe's or a Mexican Mexican place like San Jose or Casa Linda, I usually end up at El Chico, headed the other way from town. Commenter Kp who tipped the closing says it was pretty good though.

(Hat tip to commenter Kp)

UPDATE 23 March 2011 -- Well, the signage is down and the place is up for lease again:

Written by ted on March 17th, 2011

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Prowash, 2505 Broad River Road: Mid 2000s   1 comment

Posted at 12:36 am in business

I don't see this carwash at the corner of Broad River Road and Young Drive in the February 2008 phonebook, so I presume it must have closed before that (and the pricing sign looks pretty faded). This particular stretch of Broad River Road has taken a lot of hits in recent years, and this property sits directly across from the former (and still vacant) AMF Bowling Center and more or less across the street from a former Circle K.

Written by ted on March 16th, 2011

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Boardwalk Plaza / Bum's Bummers Massive Update   no comments

Posted at 11:24 pm in commentary

Folks, thanks to the courtesy of Barbara Summers and her daughter Lane, I was able to post some great new pictures from Barbara's collection for Boardwalk Plaza, Bum's Factory Outlet and Shamrock Haircutters.

Please go look at that post again, and leave your comments there!

Written by ted on March 14th, 2011

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D's Wings, 2005 Beltline Boulevard: 7 March 2011 (closed again)   17 comments

Posted at 12:32 am in restaurants

D's Wings on Beltline had a kitchen fire on Monday 7 March 2011. In the process of trying to put it out, the fire department apparently first cut a hole in the the roof of the adjacent Little Gym and doused that establishment, before getting the right site and putting out the flames (which were mostly confined to the kitchen hood anyway). The main dining area looks untouched, and fire insurance will cover everything, including advertising for the grand re-opening.

(Hat tip to my sister)

UPDATE 26 July 2011: Commenter Andrew sends these pictures noting that D's has been open again since 11 July 2011 (and in fact I took advantage of his info by having lunch there today -- it looks pretty much the same inside as it did before the fire):

UPDATE 17 July 2012 -- Some more pictures from the re-opening:

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UPDATE 5 December 2012 -- Well, it looks like this D's is closed again. I went by around 6pm and found it locked. There's no note on the door (other than "Closed" which could be a normal daily sign), but it should have been open then, and the phone is "temporarily disconnected". This place has been closed before due to an ownership transfer, and then again due to the fire -- hopefully it will be back once more. I liked to go over there every now and then when I wanted comfort food and have a grilled cheese sandwich.

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UPDATE 11 December 2012: Well, it appears that this store is relocating to the old D's location at Sparkleberry Crossing.

UPDATE 3 June 2013 -- Well, whatever this is to become (and as of yet, the D's signage is still up), it is now hiring:

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UPDATE 9 July 2013: Sulley's Bar & Grill is now open in this slot:

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Written by ted on March 14th, 2011

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Cypress Gardens, Winterhaven Florida: 23 September 2009   5 comments

Written by ted on March 12th, 2011

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Nick's (Citgo), 6002 Saint Andrews Road: February 2011   6 comments

Posted at 1:36 am in stores

I had noted this place at the corner of Saint Andrews & Piney Grove Roads, a good while before it closed because it disaffiliated with Citgo at some point in 2010. I don't know if this was because of the iffy publicity Citgo had over the last few years based on its Venezuelan ties, or whether it was just an expensive branding arrangement. Because the disaffiliation only worked during the daytime, until they turned on the light for the street-corner sign, I was going to do some half-hearted joke post about "Citgo By Night" as a play on Marvel's Vampire By Night, but it really wasn't that funny, and I never got around to it. These first two pictures were to illustrate that concept, and come from 25 Sept 2010 and 5 November 2010 respectively.

When I was taking pictures of Wata Wing the other day, I noticed that the place had totally closed up shop, with the shelves empty and the pumps torn up. I'm pretty sure I drove by a couple of times in February and didn't notice anything, so I'm guessing it happened in late Feb. Someone who really follows gas prices could probably nail it to within a week..

UPDATE 5 May 2011 -- Open again, but not as Nick's:

Written by ted on March 11th, 2011

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Palmetto Fine Cleaners, 1718 Broad River Road: 19 February 2010   1 comment

Posted at 12:50 am in business

Palmetto Fine Cleaners was on the East side of Broad River Road, more or less across from Dutch Square and Boozer Shopping Center (though not exactly across from either). It's the outbuilding of a little strip mall there, and has a really nice logo, and interesting facade. It appears to have been an orderly closing, with stored clothes passed on to another cleaner.

They also had a location on Sunset Boulevard.

Written by ted on March 10th, 2011

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