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Archive for the ‘anniversary’ tag

What A Long Strange Trip It's Been   12 comments

Posted at 1:31 pm in commentary

Welcome to folks coming from the Free Times! I'm going to pin this post to the top for a while. Things are a bit slow right now during the holidays, but read on and have a look around -- you may find something that suits your fancy.


On Saturday 29 December 2007, I made the first posting here at Columbia Closings. It was a Mission Statement for a site I had been inching towards for a while. The next day I made my first real post, about the closing of Al Amir on Devine Street. I wasn't sure in those early days exactly what was going to happen, and I suppose I still am not. Whatever it was and is, it has given me the chance to ride around taking pictures, share my thoughts on vanished (and vanishing) Columbia and solicit your comments on the same. In fact, the emphasis has shifted your way over the years. In the beginning, I had some stories I wanted to tell, and gradually I have told most of them. Now, more often than not, I will post pictures and some basic information, and you will take it from there. You can add your comments to any post, or just leave general comments at the Have Your Say link. If you ever wonder Is There A Post On That?, you can check the Alphabetical Closings link here or above. There may well be one, but if not, ask and I may add your request to my queue of posts to do.

As you can guess from the site title, this blog mostly concentrates on Columbia South Carolina retail history and nostalgia. However, if I am travelling and see something out of the area that interests me, I won't hesitate to post it here as well. In particular, I spend a lot of time on the Grand Strand and in Florida, so you never know what may pop up.

All that being said, here are some of my favorite posts from the last ten years. You may have a different set, for that matter I might have a different set on a different day, but if this is your first time at the site, I have to believe you will find *something* interesting in the posts below. You can click on either the post title, or the picture to view the full content.

Thank you for dropping by, and if something piques your interest, don't hesitate to leave a comment, and drop by regularly to see what else might catch your fancy.

Thanks everybody for a great ten years and Merry Christmas! -- Ted

Al-Amir, 2930 Devine Street

Popeyes Chicken / Aloha / El Valle / Eric's San Jose / Best China Buffet / Panda Inn / Albert Tzul / Los Alazanes / etc, 2630 Decker Boulevard

The YMCA Camp (The 'Y' Camp) / R. G. Bell Camp / Bell Camp, Mallet Hill Road

"The Big T" (Taylor Street Pharmacy), 1520 Taylor Street

Virtual Growth / Blue Cross & Blue Shield / Parcone Development Corporation, 10261 Two Notch Road

Boardwalk Plaza / Bum's Factory Outlet (Bum's Bummers) / Shamrock Haircutters, 1023 Bush River Road

Brick Chimney, Forest Drive near Lakeshore Drive

Brickyard Shopping Center, 9940 Two Notch Road

Brookgreen Gardens Nights of 1000 Candles, Brokgreen Gardens

Cafe Risque / Victory Lane, I-95 Darien Georgia

Capital Cabana Motor Inn / The Pirates' Cove Supper Club, 1901 Assembly Street

The Carriage House / Liquids Gentlemen's Club, 5511 Forest Drive

Cayce School / Lexington District Two Learning Center, Lexington Avenue Cayce

Chung King Restaurant, 20 Diamond Lane

Columbia Athletic Club, 4502 Forest Drive

Columbia Museum of Art & Science, Bull Street & Senate Street

Dairi-O, 530 North Main Street (Bishopville)

Dutch Square: Then & .. Then

Edna's #1, 3609 River Drive


Egg Roll Station (Egg Roll Chen), 715 Crowson Road (remodel)


Forest Lake Exxon, 4751 Forest Drive

Forest Lake Park, Forest Lake Shopping Center (Trenholm Road & Forest Drive)

Galaxy World, 7814 Two Notch Road (at I-77)

The Golden Spur, Russell House USC

Green Hole, Greystone Boulevard

Circle K, 4760 Forest Drive

The Happy Bookseller, Richland Mall/Forest Drive

The Hi Hatt Club, 3830 Forest Drive


Hiller Hardware, 600 Harden Street

Hurricane Hugo, South Carolina: 21 September 1989

International House of Pancakes, 1031 Assembly Street


Kmart Store 3168, 99 N Arrowwood Road

Kroger Sav-On, 2500 Decker Boulevard (Decker Mall)

Roper Pond (Lily Pond), 6837 Trenholm Road

Little Red Barn, 3051 Ocean Highway (US-17), Georgetown

Mr. Muffler, 5314 Two Notch Road

The Myrtle Beach Pavilion, Ocean Boulevard

Nix's Olympia Grocery, 500 Bluff Road

Oliver's Lodge, 4204 Highway 17 Business Murrells Inlet

Debbie's Plants, 2505 Sunset Boulevard / Pizza House 2507 Sunset Boulevard / Columbia Rehabilitation Clinic 2509 Sunset Boulevard

Planet Hollywood, 2915 Hollywood Drive (Myrtle Beach)


Red Wing Rollerway, 2632 Decker Blvd

Richland Mall: The Map

Sarge Frye Field, 1320 Heyward Street (USC Campus at Marion & Heyward Streets)

No Swimming at Sesqui

South Carolina State Fair 2008

The South Carolina State Farmers' Market, Bluff Road

The Towers, Corner of Main & Blossom

Varsity Restaurant, 2706 North Main Street

(The Original) WIS Radio, Bull St & WIS Lane

Captain's Kitchen / Zorba's / Sparta / Zorba's, 2628 Decker Boulevard

Written by ted on December 19th, 2017

Tagged with , ,

A Lustrum At The Rostrum   5 comments

Posted at 12:01 am in Uncategorized

Happy Blogday To Me!


Today's post is a bit special. It was five years ago this day that I made the first post here at Columbia Closings.

I wasn't at all sure how it would go. I had been noodling around with doing something on the Internet for a while, and the idea for the site gradually took form over the course of probably a year or so. In the end the particular pieces making up Columbia Closings fell into place for a number of reasons. Partly because I had a certain number of stories I wanted to tell in some form, partly because I wanted to do something that would force me to write at least a little bit most days, partly because I liked driving around and taking pictures and partly to stroke my ever present streak of nostalgia. If it made me rich and famous somehow as well, that would be all right too. (It hasn't).

Everything came together specifically on 29 December 2007 for a very practical reason. At the time, I was working a job that took mandatory vacation the whole week between Christmas and New Years, so I had a few days to devote to nailing down a domain-name, setting up WordPress, and figuring out how to actually write a post, upload photos and get it all published. Of course, having the time is no guarantee of getting it all right and I didn't. There were no comments on that first post, but I thought there might be some interest in my second post (which interestingly ended up as one of my most often revised ones), but again there were none. I felt as though I were writing into a black-hole. In fact, not even Google was paying any attention to me. I kept going with a bit of frustration as nothing in my posts ever showed up in Google searches. When was I going to get indexed? Finally I discovered that by default WordPress has a privacy setting that defaults to on and keeps your blog from being indexed. (Because people always start blogs they don't want anyone to read..). Resetting that to off I finally started getting some hits and it was off to the races.

Looking back, I can see that the focus of Columbia Closings has stayed pretty true to what I set out in that first post (that became the Mission Statement). There have been some shifts in emphasis though. In particular, as I said above when I started I had a number of stories I wanted to tell, and I think I more or less accomplished that. Of course, having done so, I still had an ongoing blog to run, and gradually the mix of text and pictures turned the other way around. I still do longer form written posts from time to time, but inevitably there are closings where I have no special memories to set down, so I simply note the passing and provide some pictures. (Longtime readers will note that if the day is sunny with lots of puffy clouds, I may take pictures of them with the closed business in the frame as an afterthought..).

I appreciate all the folks who read this blog, and especially those who comment (even if it's to tell me how completely wrong I've gotten it). I plan to keep on doing it for the forseeable future and hope you'll stay along for the ride. I could break out a hundred posts from the past five years that I'm very pleased with for one reason or another, but nobody would read all that, so I'll just set out here what my top twenty favorite Columbia posts of all time are (at least as I see it today -- tomorrow I might make a different list), along with a few of my occasional "out of area" posts that I'm really pleased with as extras. These are not in any particular order, but here goes!

1) Forest Lake Park:

2) USC's R. G. Bell Camp:

3) Brickyard Shopping Center:

4) Sarge Frye Field:

5) The Diamond Disco / Southern Gentleman's:

6) Gibbes Planetarium:

7) Hi Hatt Drive In / Hi Hatt Club:

8) Roper Pond:

9) Hiller Hardware:

10) 1101 Harden Street:

11) Red Wing Rollerway:

12) Tricentennial Songs:

13) Waldenbooks Dutch Square:

14) Brick Chimney Forest Drive:

15) Boardwalk Plaza:

16) Columbia Athletic Club:

17) Green Hole:

18) Circle K Forest Drive:

19) WIS Radio:

20) The Towers (USC):

Bonus Posts

As I consider the Grand Strand a second home, I haven't hesitated to throw in a post from there every now and then. Here are a few of my favorites.

1) Myrtle Beach Pavilion:

2) Hurricane Hugo:

3) McKenzie Beach:

4) Oliver's Lodge:

Stick around -- there's another lustrum coming up!

Written by ted on December 29th, 2012

Tagged with , , ,

Happy Blogday To Me!   9 comments

Posted at 12:13 am in Uncategorized

Nope, still on vacation with no new closings, but I thought I would note that three years ago today, 29 December 2007, I made the first posting on Columbia Closings.

It was a "Mission Statement" that codified the somewhat nebulous ideas I had for what I wanted to do here.

The first actual "closing" I posted was for Al-Amir on Devine Street, a space that as fate would have it is again vacant as I write this.

Before those first postings, there were several months of a vague feeling that I wanted to be doing something on the internet, culminating in a bit of an inspiration flash, when the domain-name came to me. When it proved to be available, there was figuring out hosting with GoDaddy, installing WordPress, figuring out how that worked, working out the html for doing pictures the way I wanted to and finally figuring out something to say.

Today, according to WordPress statistics, I've made 904 posts, and I plan to keep on for the foreseeable future. It hasn't brought vast wealth or world domination, but I've had fun, and I want to thank all of you who read and comment on these posts, and often as not set me straight!

Written by ted on December 29th, 2010

Tagged with ,


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