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Ruby Tuesday, 120 Columbiana Circle: March 2020   12 comments

Posted at 11:54 pm in closing

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I did a closing for the Dutch Square Ruby Tuesday back in May. At that time I took pictures of this one, on a Columbiana Mall outparcel, as well. Since, unlike the other, there wasn't any clarity that this one was permanantly closed, I held off doing a post.

I drove back by today however, and nothing has changed. The "temporarily closed" sign is still up, but at this point I suspect that is no longer accurate. At the least, it's worth a mention and if they re-open later great! In the meantime, chalk up another one for for COVID-19.

Closed Again   no comments

Posted at 11:15 pm in commentary

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See here for the story.

Written by ted on September 10th, 2020

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Shoney's, 600 Bush River Road: late December 2012   54 comments

Posted at 1:51 am in closing

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As I've said here before, we used to eat at Shoney's all the time when I was growing up, and when they were still affiliated with the Big Boy brand. The Hot Fudge Cake was always a special treat, and there were free comic books for us kids. The chain lost its way sometime in the 80s, dropping Big Boy and trying to branch out into areas they knew nothing about, like running motels..

The Columbia stores gradually started closing, with Beltline, Charleston Highway, Forest Drive and Two Notch all gone by the time I moved back to town.

This location, across from the old Kmart has seemingly been in trouble for years, as they stopped serving dinner and were open only for breakfast and lunch. As the marquee farewell message mentions, the two stores left are the Garners Ferry and Airport Boulevard locations. I haven't been in the Airport store for 20 years or so, but I've been to the Garners Ferry location several times recently, and find it rather neutral -- neither particularly good nor particularly bad. As commenter Andrew has posted, the chain has now hired a turnaround CEO to try and get the brand back on track. I wish them well, and suggest trying to make up with Bob..

UPDATE 18 September 2013 -- As mentioned by commenter Andrew, this place is leased, and is to become a Cook Out>

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(Hat tip to commenter Andrew)

UPDATE 19 April 2016 -- As mentioned by commenter Andrew, here is the excavator on the Shoney's lot:

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UPDATE 10 May 2016: Some pix of the cleared lot(s) through traffic:

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UPDATE 17 May 2016 -- A couple more pix of the vacant lot, though still not very good ones:

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UPDATE 28 June 2016 -- Construction on the Cookout continues:

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UPDATE 10 July 2016 -- Siding up now..

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UPDATE 10 September 2020: Update tags, add map icon.

Written by ted on January 10th, 2013

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Shoney's, 402 Beltline Boulevard: 1970s   21 comments

Posted at 11:59 pm in closing

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This is another former Shoney's which has been converted into a Lizard's Thicket.

I'm a little hazy about the time period, but it was still open in the 1976 phonebook, and closed in the 1985 one, so I'm going with "1970s".

Our preferred Shoney's location was the Two Notch one, but we did go to this one from time to time. For most of that period, it was still Big Boy affiliated, and we always got the "Big Boy & Dolly" promotional comics, and if we were lucky, the "Hot Fudge Cake". Mmm!

UPDATE 10 September 2020: Update tags, add map icon.

Written by ted on November 9th, 2012

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Shoney's, 3147 Forest Drive: Late 1980s   7 comments

Posted at 12:23 am in closing

Back in the 1970s, Shoney's was a big deal, and we ate there quite often. At the time, they were afilliated with the Big Boy chain, and they always had "Big Boy" comic books as free premiums for the kids. I can't recall any of his specific plotlines at this remove, but he (Big Boy) and his girlfriend Dolly, always had some sort of food related adventure in the front of the comic leaving the back for puzzles and mazes.

We ate most often at the Two Notch location (now vacant) but I think we did come to this one from time to time.

After dropping the Big Boy tie, Shoney's coasted pretty well for a while, then started getting into trouble and closing a lot of stores. At one point they tried to diversify by getting into hotels (Shoney's Inn) something for which apparently they didn't have the necessary skill set, and that hurt them some more.

I believe this one closed well before the Two Notch one, and has been a Lizard's Thicket for quite a number of years now.

UPDATE: Closing date changed from "1970s" to "late 1980s" based on commenter Weston's info.

UPDATE 10 September 2020: Update tags, add map icon.

Written by ted on December 10th, 2010

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Shoney's, 1220 Charleston Highway: 1990s   4 comments

Posted at 12:10 am in closing

Shoney's is a place we often went while I was growing up. They were affiliated with "Big Boy" then, and always had "Big Boy" comic books as free premiums for the kids, and they had what was at that time my favorite desert, the Hot Fudge Sunday Cake.

Disaffiliating from Big Boy was supposed to help them grow, but somewhere along the line they went wrong. Perhaps it was when they overextended themselves trying to establish a hotel brand, but whatever it was, they started closing stores. Right now, the only fully operating one I can think of in Columbia is the one on Garners Ferry. (I believe that the one on Bush River Road, while still open, no longer does dinner).

I can only recall eating at this Shoney's once, more or less by accident. Our troop was coming back from a camping trip somewhere, and I believe we had some sort of van and several dads driving regular cars. Something (the van I suppose) broke down, and a good part of the troop was stranded at Shoney's (I forget whether we actually made it to the parking lot or had to walk a bit) while other transport was arranged. None of us boys had any money, so the adults brought us a meal while we waited. It never occurred to me until years later that that must have been an unexpected and unwelcome financial imposition on them. Perhaps my parents settled up later, at any rate, in the way adults had back then, nobody let on anything to the kids, and we all had a *great* time.

I guess that would have been around 1974, so the restaurant still had years to go at that point. I'm not in fact sure when it went under, but I think it was sometime in the early 1990s. At any rate, it has been a Mexican operation for a number of years now.

UPDATE 10 September 2020: Update tags, add map icon.

Written by ted on October 30th, 2009

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Shoney's / Santa Fe Mexican Restaurant, 7371 Two Notch Road: 2007   17 comments

Posted at 11:50 pm in closing

I don't have a lot to say about Santa Fe. It was one of the Mexican run Mexican restaurants in town. These tend to fall into three categories: The San Jose affiliated, The Monterey affiliated and the independants. Regardless of affiliation, they tend to have bland tomatoey salsa with no hint of heat and over-cooked, unsalted chips. Since chips & salsa are my favorite part of a mexican-style meal, I don't go to these places much unless I am with someone. I would place Santa Fe about on par with the San Jose restaurants, and not quite as good as the Casa Linda independant.

The building itself started as a Shoney's, back in the days when they were "Shoney's Big Boy". We would often go there for Sunday dinner, and would always get the latest "Big Boy" comic book. For dessert I would get the Ice Cream Sundae Cake: hot chocolate syrup poured over vanilla ice cream sandwiched between two layers of warm chocolate cake and all topped with whipped cream. Pure goodness!

We went less after the Big Boy days, and the whole chain got into trouble in the 90s with this location shutting down as part of the retrenchment. You can still see the Captain D's restaurant next door. The two chains have the same ownership, and they liked to co-locate them.

UPDATE 30 April 2009: It's to be an all you can eat buffet called Savannah's

UPDATE 10 September 2020: Update tags, add map icon.

Written by ted on January 26th, 2008

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