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Sonny’s Bar-B-Q / Po Folks / Sapelo Dock / Lizard’s Thicket Fish Camp / Capt. John’s Mayflower Restaurant / Fran’s / Angus Omaha’s Beef Palace / The Zone Sports Bar and Restaurant / The Gold Club, 6246 Two Notch Road (at Arcadia Lakes Drive): 1980s etc   24 comments

Posted at 10:46 pm in closing

I first became aware of this building when it was "Po Folks", and I think that was the original tenant. Po Folks was, the name suggested, a sort of fauxy-down-home type of place where they served "country cookin'", served the drinks in mason jars and wrote the menus in misspelled "Southern" dialect. That's not really a criticism; there's a place for that type of thing, and I remember the food as being pretty good. Certainly my parents liked it a good bit, and we ate there fairly often. I don't know exactly what happened to Po Folks -- they are still around as a chain, but apparently they have contracted a great deal and no longer have any locations in South Carolina. I do know that they continued to have a Myrtle Beach location for a while after the Columbia location closed, but it's gone now as well. Today the chain seems to be largely a Florida operation with a few other restaurants in Alabama, Arizona and California.

After Po Folks left, the building went through a long period of "musical concepts". I think next it may have been the original Fran's location (Fran's later opened "Little Fran's" on Forest Drive as a smaller second store, which became simply "Fran's" when the original Fran's closed and which itself recently closed). After Fran's closed, the building was vacant for a while prompting some distruntled former patrons to put up a "Bring Back Po Folks" sign on the property. I lose track after that, but at some point it was one or possibly two different night-clubs and then an urban-comedy club. The Jim Moore used car dealership has been there a couple of years now, so possibly the site now has a stable tenant, though it's doubtful they can supply you a Blue Ribbon Chicken Dinner.

UPDATE 22 June 2009:

Well, not that stable! Moore For Less is now gone. (Also added the street addres to post title above).

UPDATE 13 March 2011: The building has been knocked down. See the Moore For Less link for pictures.

UPDATE 29 June 2021: Updating the post title with more former tenants of this building thanks to commenter Paul's research and adding tags & map icon.

24 Responses to 'Sonny’s Bar-B-Q / Po Folks / Sapelo Dock / Lizard’s Thicket Fish Camp / Capt. John’s Mayflower Restaurant / Fran’s / Angus Omaha’s Beef Palace / The Zone Sports Bar and Restaurant / The Gold Club, 6246 Two Notch Road (at Arcadia Lakes Drive): 1980s etc'

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  1. I may be wrong about this, but I seem to remember it being a "Parklane Seafood" for a while, too.


    14 May 08 at 5:55 pm

  2. You may well be right, but wouldn't the logical place for Parklane Seafood be on Parklane?


    16 May 08 at 3:36 pm

  3. back in the, maybe b4 Po Folks, it was Sonny's.


    30 May 08 at 10:30 am

  4. Sonny's Barbecue? I've seen them in Florida, but didn't know they had been around here.


    30 May 08 at 10:54 am

  5. Fran's was originally located on Forest Dr, where the "Little Fran's" location was after "[Big] Fran's" at Two Notch and Crossroads closed. Fun fact: Fran was not a person, but an acronym: Food, Ready And Nutritious. My mom's english teacher from AC Flora was one of the original owners, and divulged that tidbit back in the mid 80s, when we first went there. We joked about the Two Notch location being a deathbed for any restaurant that moved in.

    Sean Mac

    30 May 08 at 10:58 am

  6. We went to Po Folks regularly in the early 80's. I thought it was a Lizard's Thicket after Po Folks left? They still have those? How about the Villa Tronco downtown (the percursor to Lizard's Thicket-same family)?

    Po Folks had HEAVENLY iced tea.


    24 Jun 08 at 8:33 pm

  7. We still very much have Lizard's Thickets, but I'm reasonably sure this was never one. The LT for that part of Two Notch was a half mile or so towards Columbia Mall and is now an independant Japanese Steakhouse.

    Villa Tronco is still downtown though I have not been in years.


    24 Jun 08 at 11:44 pm

  8. I feel certain it was a Lizard's thicket for a short while. That doesn't make a lot of sense though since there is one down the street from there. I remember it being some kind of steakhouse for a long time in the 90s. Something with Angus in the title.

    Mr Bill

    30 Jun 08 at 11:05 am

  9. Po' Folks had another location at Boozer shopping Center as well.
    The Two Notch location housed a Lizard's Thicket "Fish Camp" place for a while.


    24 Nov 08 at 8:36 am

  10. Mr. Bill, that was "Black Angus" on Two Notch. There was a Parklane Seafood on Leesburg, but they resorted to buffett. The Parklane on Parklane trumped them.


    24 Nov 08 at 9:50 am

  11. For a while in the early '90s, this was "Captain John's Mayflower."


    23 Jan 09 at 3:22 pm

  12. i think i threw a temper tantrum in Po' Folks one time bc i wanted the deviled crab and the parents weren't having it. haha, i had to have been about 5 years old. anyway, i got the crab, ate one bite, spit it out and i don't think i have ever lived it down. lol.


    11 Mar 09 at 2:24 pm

  13. It was also a Angus Omaha Beef Palace for a time. They had really good food.


    9 Apr 09 at 2:13 pm

  14. There is still a Po Folks in Enterprise, Alabama right next to China Gate and McDonald's. BTW, it used to be a Western Steer Family Steakhouse.

    James Greek

    21 Jun 09 at 12:15 pm

  15. I live right around the corner from this place. I think the lot is haunted. If you open a biz there it will close down. I wish someone would put a gas station there. I miss the Citgo that was across the street at one time.


    12 Jan 11 at 10:30 pm

  16. I lived right around the corner from that location. After PO Folks closed, it opened as Lizards Thicket Fish Camp. My grandmother worked there as the cashier while it was open. In the early 90's the fish camp closed. Shortly after it re-opened as Angus Ohmaha's steak house and that didn't stay around very long. Seems like it was also a Frans at some point, but I don't exactly remember when as I left columbia to go to college around that time. Oh yes there was also a CITGO across the street.


    30 Aug 11 at 9:04 am

  17. How come "fish camps" never have beer? Authentic barbecue joints never do either. What's up with that?


    22 Aug 12 at 3:24 am

  18. You go around behind the building, and there's a guy there with a mason jar. *That's* authentic..


    22 Aug 12 at 3:41 am

  19. Yes... There was also a Po'Folks on Bush River--right in front of Boozer Shopping Center. The Two Notch location, pictured above, was bulldozed a few years ago. There's a free-standing Dollar General on that lot now.

    Ate there a lot as a kid, in the 80's. I remember the Mason jars. They had good biscuits too. My uncle worked at the other location.

    Dee Dee

    27 Jan 13 at 1:29 am

  20. Re: Our last visit to Po'Folks on Bush River.

    Came in one night, I asked the hostess if she could wipe the table. Bless her heart she bent down and said 'looks clean to me'.

    Went to Shoney's.


    27 Jan 13 at 7:37 am

  21. Sonny's was here for a while on Two Notch, across the side street from the various night clubs in that building. Don't know what is in the old Sonny's now, maybe a car lot. If you like ketchup BBQ Sonny's was still just mediocre. Apparently they have all of Florida brainwashed, or the transplants have never tasted good mustard, or even vinegar, BBQ.


    24 May 19 at 4:15 pm

  22. The old Po Folks building on the corner of Two Notch Rd. and Arcadia Lakes Drive was demolished in 2011 and a Dollar General store was built in its place.


    29 Jun 21 at 6:49 pm

  23. The building was built in 1978 to house the first South Carolina location of Sonny’s Real Pit Bar-B-Que. The restaurant opened on December 20, 1978, and lasted less than a year, going out of business in July 1979. After that, there were at least nine different businesses in the building before it was demolished in 2011 to make way for a Dollar General:
    • 1978-1979 – Sonny’s Bar-B-Q
    • 1980-1987 – Po’ Folks
    • 1987-1988 – Sapelo Dock, seafood restaurant
    • 1989-1991 – Lizard’s Thicket Fish Camp
    • 1991-1992 – Capt. John’s Mayflower Restaurant
    • 1992-1993 – Fran’s Restaurant
    • 1994-1997 – Angus Omaha’s Beef Palace
    • 1999 – The Zone Sports Bar and Restaurant
    • 2000-2001 – ????
    • 2002 – The Gold Club, bar/restaurant
    • 2006-2008 – Moore for Less, auto sales


    29 Jun 21 at 9:48 pm

  24. Pictures of Moore For Less and the razing of the building are here.


    29 Jun 21 at 11:05 pm

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