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Applegate's Landing, 2600 Decker Boulevard: 1980s   59 comments

Posted at 12:13 am in historic,restaurants

Applegate's Landing was on Decker Blvd somewhat behind Zorba's and the current Chik-Fil-A location. At least that's the way I remember it, though it's hard to visualize it there looking at the land today. Applegate's Landing was a sort of semi-upscale casual restaurant, on the order of Bennigans, though I don't believe it was part of a chain. I think it opened sometime in the 70s while I was in high school, at least the only two times I went there, it was with high school friends (though the second visit was some time was after our graduation).

As I recall, their main claim to fame, at least the one which made it into most of their advertising was that their salad bar was set up in the bed of a Ford Model-A pick-up truck. I'm pretty sure it really was an authentic Model-A, though it was mostly gutted. As well as the standard steaks, burgers and pasta dishes, they also had pan pizza, which they would bring to your table still in the pan. I liked my first visit well enough, but the prices were a bit high for me at the time (considering that I had no job..), and I didn't bother to go back until several years later. I had myself all set for the pan-pizza that second time only to find that they had revamped the menu and dropped that item. After that, it was again some years before I suggested the place to a group only to be informed that it had gone under. I'm not sure if this was for Applegate's specific reasons, or if it was the harbinger of the decline of the Decker corridor. At any rate, the building sat there for several years with no longer any clear way to get to it and was finally torn down. I don't know what happened to the Model-A..

UPDATE: I originally had the name of this restaurant wrong as "Appleby's Landing". I have corrected it to "Applegate's Landing" based on the comments. Thanks!

UPDATE 14 Feb 09: Commenter Midnight Rambler sent in a scan of an old Applegate's coupon, and I have posted it above.

UPDATE 12 April 2010: Added full street address to post title.

Written by ted on January 29th, 2008

59 Responses to 'Applegate's Landing, 2600 Decker Boulevard: 1980s'

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  1. I believe you're referring to Applegate's Landing... not Applebys Landing.

    Raven

    18 Feb 08 at 3:14 pm

  2. Could well be!

    ted

    18 Feb 08 at 5:50 pm

  3. AH THE MEMORIES...I'VE GOT A PIC OF ME IN 1978 (I
    WAS 13)
    SITTIN' AT MY FAVORITE TABLE, (ROUND ON UNDER
    THE GAZEBO) AND RAVEN IS CORRECT ...APPLEGATES
    ... THAT YEAR BROUGHT SOME OF THE BEST AND WORST
    TIMES IN MY LIFE, AND BOTH APPLEGATES AND JULIES
    (GARNERS FERRY) WERE INSTRAMENTAL IN THE LATTER
    great blog, by the way ...

    FISH

    19 Feb 08 at 6:29 pm

  4. Great. I'll fix the name. I don't have any pictures of Applegate's. If you want, I'll be glad to post yours.

    ted

    19 Feb 08 at 7:37 pm

  5. Hey Ted - Didn't the building that Applegate's used to be in get moved off the property to make way for the Chic-fil-a? I took a couple of dates to Applegate's when I was in high school and remember practically nothing about the menu. l really enjoyed the site and will check back for new posts.

    brian

    22 Feb 08 at 11:01 am

  6. Brian, yes I think you are right. I remember it sitting behind where it used to be for a while, and thought it was really odd they didn't just demolish it.

    ted

    22 Feb 08 at 12:45 pm

  7. Now this one brings back fond memories. I loved this place...with the water wheel. And they had separate sized doors for kids and adults...brilliant. I had forgotten the salad bar in the truck. But as a child I only cared about the pizza and chicken fingers anyway. Brian is right...they moved the building back to make room for Chic-fil-a. And it just sat there for years...odd indeed.

    Will

    2 Mar 08 at 4:10 pm

  8. I had forgotten the doors!

    ted

    3 Mar 08 at 6:21 pm

  9. I remember this place, too! I didn't remember the doors, either, but can recall the truck & water wheel. Didn't they find a body or human remains of some kind in the woods when they moved the building? Anyone else remember hearing this?

    Nancy

    21 Apr 08 at 1:19 pm

  10. I think they actually moved the whole building to the back left hand side of the property (for whatever reason - I would have thought it would have fallen in since it looked pretty rickety but oh well) and left it there for a while (maybe a couple years) until the CFA was built. Strange!

    fancylibrarian

    30 Apr 08 at 5:38 pm

  11. I heard the body rumor too. It got set on fire one morning while I was walking to Dent and nearly burned to the ground. The flames were huge, and it went REALLY quickly.

    geoff

    8 May 08 at 9:28 pm

  12. I was so excited when I saw you'd posted on this! I used to LOVE going there, I think it was the combination of the water wheel, the salad bar in the Ford and the child-sized door. I was sad when they closed it because then we only went to that other restaurant in Columbia Mall (near the Sears) and it wasn't nearly as awesome even though I remember it having two stories (???).
    Your blog just keeps bringing back my childhood!

    ColaRai

    26 Jun 08 at 7:57 pm

  13. Yep, the Cola Mall restaurant was, I think, Anabelle's and did have two stories.

    ted

    26 Jun 08 at 10:50 pm

  14. I just mentioned Applegate's Landing on the Captain's Kitchen page. I asked if anyone remembers it, and you've already got a page about it. I should read the list before I open my mouth.
    As a kid I love both Applegate's and Anabelle's because they both divided their rooms into different themes. Both where very similar in their decore. Applegate was the first time I had ever seen chicken fingers and steak finger, and we loved them. I hated when it closed too.
    I had heard that the owner tried to save the building and thought it would sell, or he had sold it and the deal fell through. That's why it was lifted and moved.

    Hal Reed

    4 Sep 08 at 6:23 pm

  15. I think that for the longest time, the building sat vacant at the rear of the lot where the Chick-Fil-A is, almost like it was moved back there.

    I remember it was overgrown with vines, etc. May still be there...

    Bobby

    17 Sep 08 at 2:13 pm

  16. It was a national chain, or at least a Southeast regional one. There was one in either Louisville or Memphis when I was very young. I remember nothing about the food, but the descriptions of the decor opened up the memory floodgates. We used to go with my grandmother, who liked the place.

    Matthew

    31 Oct 08 at 3:02 pm

  17. I had friends that worked at Applegates. I remember one time my friend Craig and I were in his car on Decker Blvd. He had this old man mask with those ferari folding sunglasses. i put hese on and we pulled up next to a Richland county sheriff. He didn't like the fact that we were screwing around, he followed us down Hunt club rd and pulled us over in the parking lot behind Applegates. I thought he was just going to ask us for our ID's but no he had other plans. He pulled out his shotgun aimed it us and told us if we moved (me especially) he would blow our heads off!. All of our friends from the restaurant came out and laughed when they saw it was us. The officer had called several other units and the whole place was full of police cars. They thought we were going to rob the mini-mart on Hunt Club Rd.

    Good times man, good times!

    Jeff

    Jeff

    24 Nov 08 at 7:54 pm

  18. Applegate's was a national chain, and was owned an operated by Wichita, KS based Pizza Hut at the time (before Pizza Hut moved headquarters to Plano, TX). There was about 30 locations built, all with the same Model A salad bar, and water wheel. There is still one of the original buildings left in Wichita, KS that now has a Chinese restraunt in it. Thanks for the memories!

    Ken

    6 Jan 09 at 5:15 pm

  19. We had some in Wichita. I loved the pan pizza, but my favorite dish was the Gilbertini, a sausage/pasta/cheese dish that was to die for. I went every Saturday to Towne East Mall when they put an Applegate's Landing there. I remember that the original buildings had a turret also. A group of "the Bank Bunch" from 1st National Bank (now Intrust) in Downtown Wichita would take a quick trip to eat at Applegate's Buffet which was well worth the trip for the price. I really miss Applegate's.

    Sherrie Murphy

    31 Mar 09 at 5:35 pm

  20. Dennis

    1 Apr 09 at 6:50 pm

  21. Although I'm too young to ever have gone there i do remember when i was a little kid seeing the remains of it out in the woods when we would go to chic fi la. all of a sudden a couple years ago though the building became no longer visible. i also was told by my mom about them finding a body back there and about a fire.

    John

    12 May 09 at 11:50 pm

  22. Applegate's Landing was part of a chain. It was a division of Pizza Hut International. I remember eating at the Towne East Mall location in Wichita, KS. One of the last, if not the last, was located in McPherson, KS. It closed in Septermber, 1995, and is now a dentist office. The McPherson location was the first in the chain.

    Trent

    2 Sep 09 at 11:34 am

  23. Applegate's Landing was my favorite restaurant while I lived in Wichita, Kansas, in the 1970s. I frequented the one at Oliver and 13th Street. I don't remember the salad bar being in a Model A pickup but I do recall the water wheel and the all-you-can-eat sald for $1.50! Sherrie is right....the Gilbertini was excellent, baked in the same dish it was served and one of my favorite menu items. They also had gourmet pizzas made with whole wheat crust.

    Also true, it was a franchise owned by Pizza Hut here in Wichita.....back when Pizza Hut had its corporate headquarters here. The story I heard is that Applegate's Landing was created as a tax write-off for the company. Instead, it made money and Pizza Hut quickly sold it. The next owner kept the name but went to a mainly seafood menu. Business dropped right off. The next owner brought in a Pullman dining rail car on actual train tracks! The menu changed to hamburgers and the Gilbertini was gone! I stopped dining there. One of my other favorite restaurants was right down the street at Oliver and Central that was called Dr. Redbird's Medicinal Inn, I think. There was a second location downtown. Each was decorated to look like you were in the 1800s. During these years, Wichita had the highest per capita number of people who ate out in the country. There were a lot of "fun" restaurants and not all the chains we see today. There was the Grinder Man that was inside of a large trolley car or The Plantation that served family style. There were too many pizza places though: Big Cheese, Godfather's Pizza, Pizza Peddler, Shakey's and Pizza Hut, of course. The original Pizza Hut is now located on the Wichita State University campus.

    Glenn

    12 Nov 09 at 1:56 pm

  24. There was a set of three or four bleacher seats from the original Yankees stadium. These were used as seats in the waiting area right next to the water wheel.

    Cameron

    10 Mar 10 at 2:24 pm

  25. Applegates Landing was a Pizza Hut Inc. concept that wasn't successful, as for as PHI was concerned. It was suppose to be an upscale, white table cloth restaurant concept as opposed to Pizza Huts garish red roofs basic pizza food.

    Preston Lewis

    24 Mar 10 at 1:44 am

  26. my uncle owned the one in columbia . it was a great place fun great food . hated to see it go have some old photos and ads from old yearbooks remember the billboard at two notch decker/parklane "steakout at applegates". prom dates get togethers and so raise a glass cheers!!

    joe

    12 Jun 10 at 8:46 pm

  27. I remember "steakout! Any pictures you want to share, I'll be glad to post here. Just send to closings at columbiaclosings dto com

    ted

    13 Jun 10 at 3:31 am

  28. Just bought 4 wine glass's from "Appiegate's Landing" at a garage sale,don't know much about them,do they mean anything to anybody? Payed 75 cent's a piece,You want them pay shipping.Mike 419-343-7823

    mike

    20 Dec 11 at 10:46 am

  29. I dont know what year that building burned, but I do remember one morning when I was in 5th grade at conder elementary, my teacher told us there was a fire down by Dent Middle School. Dont know if this was the same fire or not. If I was 10 this had to be around 91- 92. However, I don't remember anything other than Chic-fil-a being there.

    Amanda

    4 Mar 12 at 4:04 pm

  30. Are you sure the building was torn down? I believe that when the lot it was sitting on was to be reused that the building was moved about 50 yards back from Decker into the woods. It was visible for several years and it may still be back there.

    Mike

    4 Mar 12 at 6:33 pm

  31. OK--I should have used the tools available. I went to Google maps and the overhead picture of the area shows some clearings in the woods that may be remnants of where the building was moved to. However (unless it's hidden by the tree canopy) I guess it was finally torn down.

    Mike

    4 Mar 12 at 6:41 pm

  32. YES indeed!! I was just talking to my mom about Applegates. I was about 8 or so when I first went there. That CAR SALAD BAR was very cool to me. The pizza and bread were great too!
    My uncle used to work there so we would go every weekend.

    As I got older the building did sit and sit in that corner right across from Rushes. Trees and all. They finally bulldozed it down and put a FREAKIN Chic Filet there. Man....I used to live in Charlotte and they have such a variety of everything. We are the only city I know of that has the SAME EXACT places to eat on all sides of town! NOTHING. I hate that about Columbia Restaurants.
    Example: Buffalo Wild Wings. COME ON. They have been around for years. Why is Columbia just getting one?
    As far as tourism and attraction, i think we are at number zero.

    Al

    26 Mar 12 at 10:56 am

  33. Well, I would have to disagree with the "same thing all over town" concept.

    Only El Chico: west side. Only Fudruckers: west side. Only Uno: way west side. Only Indian: west side or 5 points.

    ted

    26 Mar 12 at 11:53 pm

  34. @Al--

    Columbia has 3 Buffalo Wild Wings that I know of--

    Devine St., Two Notch (in front of the Wal-Mart), and Harbison Blvd. (in the old O'Charley's)

    Mike

    27 Mar 12 at 6:54 am

  35. Lexington has a Buffalo Wild Wings in the Lexington Town Centere (near the Walmart on 378)

    Andrew

    27 Mar 12 at 11:04 am

  36. Columbia had a BW3 back in the 90's in Five Points and closed down, so technically, they are coming back instead of just arriving.

    jonathan

    28 Mar 12 at 8:14 am

  37. Speaking of a varitey of places to eat, just outside of Greenville is the place to go. I have NEVER seen so many places in one area before. Seems Greenville is way ahead of Columbia as far as that is concerned, and I'm sure Charleston is much better than Columbia too. Columbia is the same as it always was, but seems to be getting less and less. Columbia is geared to the College kiddie crowd with bars and bars and more bars. Five Points is a College hangout too and always has been. Columbia is just PLAIN OLD BORING.

    Saturday's child

    28 Mar 12 at 8:44 am

  38. It is boring because that is what the majority of the population wants. What they've consumed before is what they want again. That is the only reason that you drive by a Red Lobster or an Olive Garden and see the parking lots overfilled. Doubtless there are a few people who are trying for the first time, but for the majority, they go there and get the same meal over and over, because it is consistent. When you are coming into town tomorrow, glance over at the line of people @ McDonalds. Does anybody go there because it is good, or do they go there because that is the only place they ever go for breakfast? It's microwaved food. You would do better just buying frozen sausage biscuits and nuking them yourself.
    There are some fantastic Mexican establishments in our midst, but they come and go because the population wants Casa De Linda, Monterrey's, San Jose, etc., where they can eat "Mexican fare" but still feel like they are still in the United States. Go to Real Mexico on Bush River, and I promise you'll never want to set foot in a chain Mexican establishment again.

    jonathan

    28 Mar 12 at 12:44 pm

  39. What you said just backs up what I said..COLUMBIANS ARE BOOOOORINNNGGGG!!! They've always been for as long as I remember. They want the same old same old..nothing new ever. It's like leftovers..the same thing over and over til your head explodes. No wonder Columbia is very typical.

    Saturday's child

    28 Mar 12 at 1:26 pm

  40. Or better yet.. It's very "Columbia". Typical and BORING and very predictible.

    Saturday's child

    28 Mar 12 at 1:28 pm

  41. What do ALL these have in common? Columbia, USC, Reading a Book, Watching Grass Grow, Columbia Mall, Dutch Square, Black and White TV's, Barnyard Fleamarket, Papa Jazz.

    Answere: THINGS THAT ARE BORING!

    Saturday's child

    28 Mar 12 at 1:33 pm

  42. @ Saturday's child. You had me until Papa Jazz. Love the place...I hope I never see them on this site.

    jonathan

    28 Mar 12 at 3:08 pm

  43. I have lived in Columbia for nearly 40 years and would say that nothing has changed. Yes there are new buildings and a few new places, but the attitude is all the same. It is weird how all the same people and places just keep repeating. It is depressing how excited people get over things like Whole Foods and Trader Joes coming to Columbia, when these should just be mundane additions to the business landscape. But Columbia is held back by the attitude that (1) you have to leave town to buy stuff if you have class; (2) if anyone is more successful than you they are a threat; and (3) no one can be better.

    Larry

    28 Mar 12 at 4:58 pm

  44. Papa Jazz was really good when it was originally "Rich's Records", then changed into Papa Jazz. Their selection of Beatles and others were really good, and you could fine white label promo lp's AND 45's. Then things changed where Tim and his helpers grab all the good stuff to sell on ebay or to keep for themselves, and leaves nothing but the over priced non collectible Lp's unless you wanna pay $$$ for their good stash of things. They dont take anything like they used too, and it's ALWAYS the same old thing everytime. USC keeps them in business..other than that, it would close. But I agree..Columbians think for the most part that no one else exist in this State..but Greenville is JUST as bad and more snotty than Columbia. That's why it'll never change, and I've live here pretty much all my life other than moving to Nashville and then back here to Columbia in the late 90's.

    Saturday's child

    28 Mar 12 at 6:55 pm

  45. Thinking about Saturday's Child's list of boring things:

    Reading a Book: don't do too much of that

    Watching Grass Grow: like the way hair grows on our heads, it happens to slow to make any type of session out of it

    Columbia Mall: This was officially renamed Columbia Place sometime around 2002-03 but in an approach that is out of character for me, I can't bring myself to call it that (which is why I call it Columbia Place Mall)...someone I know recently said it is now a 'warzone'

    Dutch Square: mall looks good on paper but when you walk the mall, you're in a very light crowd

    Black and White TV’s: before my time and I like my color on just about everything in life

    The other interesting thing is that it often seems as GSP and CHS see air service increases easier than CAE does for some reason...

    Andrew

    28 Mar 12 at 10:14 pm

  46. I still call it Columbia Mall since that's what it was and still is. I dont know the idiot or idiots that re-named it, but it doesnt help it at all. Dutch Square Mall is as dead as the Latin Language and it's geared to a certain group of people now. With Pappa Pappy Jazzy Jazz, the only reason it still is going is because of the USC kiddies and SOME Jazz collectors I guess. Charleston is nice..and MUCH more friendly than Columbia, and Greenville is MUCH MUCH more snotty than Columbia, but Columbia has the attitude that they're better than anything else in the State. Columbia-zians dont like things to change..it's the same-OLD- thing. That's why Columbia wont change from what you see now. The homeless and others have taken over downtown and have ruined it for a lot of people. I'm surprized that First Baptist downtown and USC havent taken over the entire city yet..they would if they could though.

    Saturday's child

    29 Mar 12 at 8:32 am

  47. Speaking of things that arent around anymore, has there been an article done on the old Trailways Bus Station on Sumter St.? when it was across from the original Richland County Library?

    Saturday's child

    29 Mar 12 at 8:36 am

  48. While I agree with you on some of your points concerning Papa Jazz, nothing is the way it was. USC keeps many businesses in the black. You think Sid and Nancy would exist in Sandhills? As far as staff hoarding the valuable goods, it's a perk of working there. Why wouldn't they? If you're dumb enough to take a $20 OOP cd in there and trade it for $2, that is your problem. The same w/ vinyl. That is what the internet is for. It works both ways. I flip cds all the time, purchasing them from a pawn shop for $1, trading them to Papa for $6. As far as them being selective on buying trades, you end up with a better product across the board. They actually grade their used vinyl. Manifest does not. Papa refused a bunch of trade I had the other day, and I took it to Manifest and got $46 for it. I then purchased some new merchandise, because some of their used looks as though it was drug through gravel. Speaking of changing, how much has Manifest changed even when they were just a small shop on Main Street? Their gift cards now are Music Land.

    jonathan

    29 Mar 12 at 9:17 am

  49. I still call Sidney Park Sidney Park.

    Columbia Mall is Columbia Mall.

    Richland mall is Richland Mall.

    tonkatoy

    29 Mar 12 at 9:26 am

  50. I agree 100% Tonkatoy.. I still call "Decker" by it's real name.. DENTSVILLE. I wonder why people dont call it that anymore? I call things by the names they were to begin with. I guess people try and make things sound better than they really are..or try to give it a "classy" more updated name. But to me, it's a joke. Columbia Mall is a trouble makers paradise along with Dutch Square. I'm surprized that Harbison hasnt become "urbanized" like the rest of the Malls have.

    Saturday's child

    29 Mar 12 at 2:21 pm

  51. I have never known of Sidney Park. Someone could approach me with how to get to Sidney Park and I'd have no clue what they're talking about.

    My understanding on the Columbia Place renaming is that CBL Associates, Inc. changed the name as part of a mall remodel sometime in the neighborhood of 2002. It's atypical of me to not reprogram myself to know it by the new official name but something within me doesn't want to do that with Columbia Place so consequently I find myself calling it Columbia Place Mall.

    My understanding with Richland Mall was that Midtown Management, LLC acquired it and decided to rename it Midtown at Forest Acres and had plans to make it over into condominiums and office suites. A forecloseure later, Century Capital Group acquired it app. 2 years ago, their first step in their quest to bring new life into this facility was change the name from Midtown at Forest Acres back to Richland Mall so I have consequently reprogrammed myself to think of it as Richland Mall. Following the changeover, I met a lady who worked at the local offices for Belk that said that they never really utilized the Midtown at Forest Acres name when it was officially known as that.

    Kinko's is now FedEx office but they have signage out front showing they have Kinko's Copying Services. I haven't had much trouble reprogramming myself on that one.

    Andrew

    29 Mar 12 at 2:49 pm

  52. Finlay Park is Sidney Park 2.0

    badger

    29 Mar 12 at 4:28 pm

  53. Sidney Park at one time was called "Seaboard Park" when there were trains back then that would go through the area and I think also it was like a train yard type place according to the books I have on Historical Columbia things. There also used to be a park around the Columbia City Water Works/Canal place..but cant remember the name off hand. I think that was back in the early 1900's or the 1890's which was a little before my time.

    Saturday's child

    29 Mar 12 at 6:20 pm

  54. It was Sidney park first, then Seaboard Park, then back to Sidney Park when they rebuilt it, then Finlay Park.

    The original Sidney Park had a small zoo, as did Hyatt Park.

    tonkatoy

    30 Mar 12 at 6:52 am

  55. There was a body found on the Applegates Landing property when it was moved. I don't remember all of the details, but the body was that of a woman who was killed by a man that she'd met when they were both riding the SCE&G bus, if memory serves. I also remember for some reason that the woman lived on Zeigler St.

    Frances

    20 Feb 13 at 5:11 pm

  56. tonkatoy

    11 Oct 13 at 7:29 am

  57. Modern Cotton Mill Engineering? O. . .K :D

    badger

    11 Oct 13 at 10:37 am

  58. LOL! You mean you didn't learn something?

    Try this one: http://digital.tcl.sc.edu/cdm/singleitem/collection/rmaxey/id/913/rec/1

    Copy pasta error.

    tonkatoy

    11 Oct 13 at 11:45 am

  59. @tonka - man that picture just brought back memories!!! I'm going to have to check that site out and see what other goodies they have!!!!

    Thanks!!!!!

    Homer

    12 Oct 13 at 1:53 am

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