Archive for March, 2017
Well, as has been noted in Have Your Say a good many times already, Family Christian Stores is closings all of the chains stores and going into liquidation.
I had thought I recalled that this chain started as Zondervan (who once had a store at Columbia Mall though I never did a closing), and these articles confirm it. The Zondervan brothers founded the business in 1931, giving them an 85 year run, which is certainly not bad. In 2012, the current management brought out the already money losing business and reorganized as a non-profit, but even on that basis the cash flow was not enough, and the chain filed for Chapter 11 in 2015, but even with shedding a lot of debt, the re-organization never was able to stay above water and apparently a lot of the debt shed was owed to small enterprises which could not afford to stay in business without the owed payments, so a bad situation all the way around.
(Hat tip to commenter Andrew I think)
It looks like this old gas station at the corner of Two Notch and Germany Street is vacant again.
T T & B was the follow-on operation to Auto Selection, which was the follow-on to K & C Radiator Center, so the car theme has been pretty consistent.
HiLights / So You Want To Dance / Columbia Beauty School, 1824 Airport Boulevard: 2016-ish no comments
These are not great pictures of this office building at the corner of Airport Boulevard & Dale Lane as the sun was against me. Google suggests that the place has housed a variety of businesses, probably several at the same time. You can see the sign for HiLights here, which I take to be a hair salon, though I can't quite read the rest of the sign. Perhaps it was associated with the beauth school.
It is hard to see, but it appears that the ground floor of the building has stained glass windows in front, though I see no indication that it was ever a church.
I noticed the other weekend that 3 Point Cafe & Grill, the follow-on to Buck's Cafe, on River Drive had now closed and that a new restaurant was in its place: Dimp's Cafe & Grill. That makes three restaurants into this spot since it was remodeled. Hopefully this one will stick around for a while.
Amusingly, one of the google search suggestions that came up as I was typing this address was "convert to decimal". (Which would be 22 for those who care..)
Anyway, here's another phone store on the move. This one from this building to a brand new building constructed after the demolition of the former buildings at 10202 Two Notch.
(Hat tip to commenter mike)
UPDATE 27 March 2017 -- The new location:
I like Applebee's pretty well. For a late night burger, it's one of the better options, and they usually actually cook them "well done" when I ask.
We used to go to this particular Applebee's store fairly frequently for Sunday lunch years ago. Then there was a period where it had a 'B' or 'C' rating and fell off our list. They fixed that, but we had mostly moved on. The last time I can specifically recall eating here, was during one of the most torrential downpours I had ever seen. We asked for, and got, permission to leave through the side door as it was much closer to the car.
Speaking of rains, I believe this store was badly beset by the October 2015 flood, so it rather surprises me that they have closed it after recently putting so much money into it to get it open again. According to the note on the door, which I will post when I get my daytime pictures uploaded, this store has the same ownership as the one out Two Notch towards Sparkleberry (and which I eat at probably once a month or so) and the one on Killian Road, and those are still open.
Appropos to none of this, specifically, one of the more funny and surreal dining experiences I ever had was at an Applebee's in Florence when the kitchen had stopped talking to the servers and only the bartender was on speaking terms with both sides and ended up passing orders and tense communications back and forth.
(Hat tip to commenter JB2)
UPDATE 21 March 2017 -- As mentioned, the daylight pix:
A flawed man, but no Chuck Berry -- no Rock & Roll. Go Johnny Go.
I think the my problem with O'Charley's is that I have never been quite sure what it is. I mean, it's not a fine restaurant, it's not an Italian, Mexican, seafood or hamburger restaurant; it's not homecooking or a diner -- there's a lot of things it isn't but no hook to hang its hat on. In that way, it is rather like Ruby Tuesday (hmm, even the lyric is appropriate..).
That said, I did used to go to O'Charley's from time to time when I was working in Augusta. There was (perhaps still is) one just off the Bobby Jones Expressway in what is Augusta's "Harbison" area. They had a chips & salsa appetizer with in-store-made salsa that was quite good, and the burgers were decent. When this store opened at Columbia Mall and I was in town for the weekend, my sister, father and I would eat Sunday lunch there from time to time. After the store moved to Sparkleberry, I only stopped by once, and found that the chips & salsa appetizer was off the menu, and furthermore, they were out of burgers -- I left without eating anything, and didn't go back.
According to The State the chain closed this store because it was underperforming, and near the end of its lease. If the concept couldn't perform here, or or in Harbison, it's hard to think where it could, although so far the Lexington store is still with us.
The first picture was taken several years ago. I was admiring the way the sign looked at night and stopped to take some pictures, but in the event they didn't turn out well because the lighting made the sign over-exposed and the rest under-exposed, and I didn't want to set up a tripod and try for bracketed exposures for HDR as I would be a highly visible person doing something very questionable looking on a busy road. The rest of the pictures were taken after the closing, although I will need to go back eventually and get out of the car for some closer looks.
(Hat tip to commenter JB)
UPDATE 27 March 2017 -- A few more and closer:
Well, this place never seems to stick. I noticed driving I-26 the other week that it seemed to be dark during a time you would expect a nightclub to be in full operation. A stop by a few days later confirmed it. You'll notice the phonebook by the door, which is a prime indicator, and one I have seen many times over the years. That dates the closure to prior to February 2017, but not any more precisely.
I will say one problem this place has never had is parking -- the lot comprises huge tracts of land.