Ethan Lam / The Daily Gamecock

Five Points sees closures, openings, closures again

Five Points has experienced plenty of change in the past four years as bars and restaurants have filtered in and out. 

Delaney's Music Pub closed last November after 20 years in business and was replaced by Fall Line, a sports bar. Rio’s Pizza and Bagels closed too, as did its successor, The Barn, which is perhaps best remembered for its 50-cent traditional boneless wings and 128-ounce beer towers.

But no story of closure is as tumultuous as that of Pour House.

On March 19, 2017, Daniel Halsey Wells, the owner of Pour House, assaulted a USC student outside of the bar. Wells placed the student in a chokehold and threw him to the pavement, breaking his jaw and several teeth.

Two weeks after the incident, Wells turned himself in to the police and was charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature. By May, Wells closed the bar at the urging of Columbia police.

According to The State, the agreement followed Police Chief Skip Holbrook's comment that the bar was a nuisance to the city due to its history of fighting, underage drinking and serving alcohol later than city law permitted.

Although the bar reopened later that year under new management and the name Five Points Roost, it would suffer a similar fate as Pour House. 

Judge Deborah Durden denied The Roost a temporary liquor license because it did not sell enough food to qualify as a restaurant, according to The State. It was argued whether or not bars sold enough food to sell Under South Carolina law, alcohol may only be sold at restaurants and hotels.

Judge Durden went on to call the bar a "nuisance" to the community. The Roost has since closed.

Five Points Saloon, The Barn, Cover 3, Group Therapy, The Horseshoe and Lucky's have all been challenged in the wake of The Roost's liquor license denial. Officials are beginning to crack down on bars around Five Points, questioning how much food they are actually selling and whether they too may be a "nuisance" to the community.

Despite the closures, Five Points has also seen new businesses open, like The Baked Bear. The shop opened last April, and while Carolinians may have been mourning the loss of their favorite bars and restaurants, the custom ice cream sandwiches likely helped soften the blow.

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