Archive for the ‘Devine Street’ tag
McDonald's Hamburgers, 4801 Garners Ferry Road / 4336 Wildcat Road: August 2012 (open again) 18 comments
This should be some sort of lesson to me as I had several daylight pictures of this place, but a few weeks ago I decided they weren't very good, and deleted them with an eye to getting some better ones at some point. That's not the first time I've done that sort of thing either. I should learn!
However I did manage to hold onto the two nighttime pix of the place which are presented up top.
Commenter Joe Hinson remarks on the "old style" of the demolished building, but when I tood the night pix, I was thinking how modern it looked. In part I suspect that's because I remember at least one other version of the store here, and probably two.
The initial building sat much closer to the road than the most recent one, and was, I think, still in the classic McDonald's "walk up" style. It was something like this retro building from Starke Florida:
I believe this version was the first McDonald's in Columbia, and indeed, the 1970 phonebook lists 4801 Garners Ferry Road as "No. 1", with 1303 Charleston Highway as "No. 2", 2907 Two Notch as "No. 3", and 1729 Broad River Road as "No. 4". (4336 Wildcat Road was listed as the office location). Certainly it was the first McDonald's I had ever encountered, and it played a big part in my elementary school days at Satchel Ford. This was because, while we normally got our burgers at Bell's on Forest Drive, when report cards came out in Richland One, this McDonald's always ran a promotion such that if you had all 'A's & 'B's, you got a free hamburger.
Now, in those days, I was a pretty good student, and I always had all 'A's & 'B's, *except* for handwriting for which I always had a 'C'. In my mind, handwriting was not a "real" subject, and I always had my father make that case to the window clerk, and it always worked. In retrospect, I know he didn't relish the idea of arguing with some guy over a burger, but he was proud of me, and a great dad, so he did it every report card period without demur. I believe that mascot "Ronald McDonald" debuted in this era. Initially he was a pantomine clown with an overbearing boss whose tasks for Ronald always turned into a series of pratfalls..
The second McDonald's here, I think was a non-descript 70s building that did emphasize inside dining more than walkups, but had no play area. We didn't go to that one often because by that time, there was one more or less at the corner of Decker & Trenholm which was closer and involved fewer traffic lights. (And Bell's was gone by then). I believe it was at this point that the restaurant was set further back from Garners Ferry.
I'm not sure when the play-area, boxy looking remodel came in, but I think it was while I was living out of town in the 80s or 90s, by which time I was essentially never eating at McDonald's anymore. (Lately they have learned to make a very good cup of coffee, and provide wifi so that I finally have been back some).
(Hat tip to commenter mamarose)
UPDATE 1 September 2012 -- I found another set of daylight (well, twilight..) pictures of the building:
UPDATE 12 September 2012 -- Construction has started is moving at a pretty good clip:
And here's a yellow pages ad from the walkup days:
UPDATE 18 September 2012 -- The frame appears complete, and hiring has started:
UPDATE 9 November 2012 -- As mentioned in the comments, this store is open again:
Rice Music House was a daily advertising presence on WIS radio when I was growing up. I remember that they constantly mentioned their Steinway ("The finest piano in the world") and Cable-Nelson pianos. Another big selling point was that "We own all our pianos". At the time, I figured that all stores owned everything they sold, so I didn't see why it was a big deal. Now it seems sort of amazing that they carried all those grand pianos on their own ledgers.
In the event, I suppose advertising isn't everything, because when it came our time to buy a piano, we went with Haven's a bit further up Divine Street. I think they threw in lessons with the instrument, though by the time we finished our year of lessons, they were starting to de-emphasize pianos and get into the framing business that became their mainstay while Rice went on for another 40 years.
Rice announced their closing/move in March. Interestingly, the initial announcements and the story in The State all mentioned that the store would be moving (in downsized form, without sheet music or repair shop) to The Village At Sandhill, but none of their mail circulars, their closing website or the window signage mentioned the move. I was a bit worried at first, but I did finally see their storefront at Sandhill, and the final closing door note does mention the new store.
Here's another payday loan operation. This one was almost at the corner of Beltline and Devine, next to the Maurice's location. I don't know exactly when it closed, but since it is still listed in this year's phonebook (February 2012), I am going to say early this year.
As a special added bonus, simply because I like the sign, here is a shot of one of their neighbors:
This Kmart, accessible from Fort Jackson Boulevard, Devine Street, Crowson Road and Wildcat Road has been there for my entire, remembered, life (it is technically a little younger than I am), and was a place I went many times with my Mother over the years (though probably not as many times as to the Two Notch store). In the beginning, the left side of the Kmart building was occupied by a Big Star grocery and then by an Old America Store. Finally, in the throes of the last good idea the chain had, Kmart converted to a Big-K format store and expanded into the old grocery space. This status-quo lasted a good number of years, but recently there have been signs of malaise like closing and trying to rent out the auto service bays.
I want to like Kmart as I have good childhood memories of the place, but their current strategy seems to be to not have a strategy, other than, perhaps, closing stores when Wal Mart opens nearby. Now, I'm not saying I know what a successful stragegy for them would be, but good heavens, they have to try *something*! Go 24 hours, get Martha Stewart back, co-brand with The Food Channel, open in-store bowling alleys -- something!
And hire some staff, yes, that's expensive, but if you're in a "bet the company" situation (and you are, whether you think of it that way or not) you've got to make shopping easy. The last time I stopped at this store, I was in a bit of a hurry and found my item quickly, but it was in a locked display case with nobody in the department. The staff I could find in other departments were very friendly, but couldn't leave their area and nobody ever showed up who could make the sale before I had to go -- so they didn't make that sale, and I'm not sure they can afford to not make sales.
Anyway, as of Memorial Day, the place was not completely picked clean and still had some reasonable looking bargins. I noticed in particular, that if you need some alkaline batteries, now is the time to get your "Die Hard" AAA, AA 9V & Cs (didn't see any Ds).
UPDATE 6 June 2012 -- And, it's gone!
UPDATE 11 June 2012 -- Pix from 7 June. The Devine Street roadside sign is gone, and the marquee sign is about to go:
UPDATE 14 June 2012: Added full 7 June 2012 photoset.
UPDATE 20 June 2012 -- As these pictures from 8 June show, all the signage is now gone (also added full 8 June photoset below):
M Boutique on Devine Street has closed its doors in preparation for a move to the new Whole Foods complex.
Of course that shopping center isn't anywhere near ready to occupy:
so the new location isn't scheduled to open until October, meaning that there will be no revenue coming in for 4+ months -- it seems very odd timing.
(Hat tip to commenter Mary Douglass)
As you can see from the hairdresser's sink at the back of the space, Dianna's was the last operation in here. These pictures were taken on 16 December 2011, so they were already gone by then, but they are listed in the February 2012 phonebook, so I'm guessing they did not close too long before that.
The operation before Dianna's was Liberty Tax Service, which, I believe, did not close, but simply moved down the street a bit.
Here's yet another Payday loan storefront that is no longer with us. This one is in the Bi-Lo/Staples plaza at the confluence of Devine, Cross Hill and Fort Jackson Boulevard. (Curiously, this strip mall does not seem to have a name, or at least not one on its marquee.)
Not that this closing leaves the place without a loan operation -- this is where Capitol Loan Office moved to from Main Street. And also note that if you lease this space, you apparently get a free MoneyGram neon sign, which is kind of nifty.
When I would eat at Ruby Tuesday, I would occasionally stop at this S-Mart BP (which I'm pretty sure started as a Hess) on my way home, especially since they tore down the Forest Drive Circle K. It was nothing special, though I always thought it was a bit odd that they had the "under seige"/"cashier in a cage" setup inside as the area doesn't seem especially bad to me.
I'm pretty sure that the number of pumps decreased over the last year or so, something I wondered about. It may be that the writing has been on the wall for a while..
When the ax did fall, they wasted no time getting the remaining pumps out of there, a process that usually takes a little while.
The side road to this place, Crowson Road is an odd little street that connects Devine with Fort Jackson Boulevard and also has a semi "back way" into K-Mart with a bridge over Gills Creek. It has always had sort of an unfinished/1960s vibe to me. I guess this is probably due mostly to the odd cluster of buildings, from the original Egg Roll Station building to the old buildings at the intersection with Fort Jackson Boulevard..
(Hat tip to commenter Badger)
There's been a lot of speculation in Have Your Say lately as to whether Branham's Exxon at the corner of Devine & Ott is open or not.
I think the answer is probably: It's open, but it's not Branham's. Commenter Nobody saw a sign there to the effect that it was closing 24 March 2012 after 35 years, but when I drove by, I saw the station open and with people actively filling their cars. A closer inspection on a later Sunday trip reveals that the streetside sign now says:
Gas Pumps Open
Keenan Oil Co
while the other sign of the sign says that the "shop" (which could be the convenience portion, the auto bay portion, or both) is temporarily closed.
It appears that the station has been sold to Keenan which is, for the nonce at least, running it as a gas-only station. I certainly wish the owners a nice retirement, but it's sad to see another of the very few "mechanic on duty" stations left close. In fact, the only other one that comes to mind right now is Null's Exxon on Two Notch.
UPDATE 5 February 2013: It's now a Gaz-bah:
I've heard the phrase "objects of virtu" before (probably in an SF story), and according to the always accurate Wikipedia:
The Italian humanist Giovanni Pontano described these objects as "statues, pictures, tapestries, divans, chairs of ivory, cloth interwoven with gems, many-coloured boxes and coffers in the Arabian style, crystal vases and other things of this kind . . . [whose] sight . . . is pleasing and brings prestige to the owner of the house." They all spoke to the wealth, taste and virtu of their owner.
-- John Brewer, The Pleasures of the Imagination
Judging from the way the peeling front awning reveals a palimpsest Dianne's, I suspect this whole space was once part of Dianne's, but since I've never visited that place either, I can't say for sure.
(Hat tip to commenter April).