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May 20, 2011

Tiki Barge stays open; Lagers Pub does not

The on-again, off-again saga of Harborbiew's floating barge came to a definitive end Thursday night, or at least until neighbors of the Tiki Barge find another patron humping a potted palm tree.

At its weekly meeting, the Baltimore Liquor Board reversed an April decision to suspend the Tiki's liquor license for a month in July.

The decision comes with a $3,000 fine and an agreement from the bar to beef up security.

The news first broke on the bar's own Facebook page, where managers gleefully announced in all caps, "Come on down and celebrate with us."

The Tiki Barge's problems started when neighbors filed last year a dossier of complaints that included accusing patrons of simulating sex with potted shrubbery in the area. Other complaints are here

In April, the liquor board ruled to suspend the bar's license, which includes nearby Tabrizi's and Sorso Cafe, because of "lax security" and misrepresentations made to the liquor board in a renewal application, chairman Stephan Fogleman said.

The board ruled then that during the last license renewal, management incorrectly suggested the bar would cater only to residents. Management also submitted a letter of support in the application from a resident group that was actually controlled by the developer, Richard Swirnow.

Because the suspension would have adversely impacted Sorso and Tabrizi's, the board took up the case again. It changed its ruling after the bar's managers agreed to a plan with neighbors that would include two security guards to escort unruly patrons out, according to Fogleman. The Tiki Barge currently employs one such security guard.

In a nod to the new detente, Tiki Barge's celebratory status update came with a caveat. "Please," it read,"remember to be respectful of our neighbors at Harborbiew." At long last, those potted plants will sleep easy. 

Lagers Pub

The Canton bar has closed, reports City that Breeds, because owner Nicholle O’Malley didn't agree to a higher rent from her landlord. According to property records, 2522 Fait, Inc. is the the owner of the Lagers' building.

Lagers had been run by a new manager since January who renovated the interior and added live entertainment.

It was the second bar to close on Thursday, after the Hexagon Space announced its own shutdown on its website.

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Posted by Erik Maza at 10:35 AM | | Comments (5)
Categories: Liquor Board news, News


Wasn't Lager's voted the worst bar in Baltimore by this blog?

who gets top spot now?

Lagers had been for sale for quite a while. The lease was what drove people away. Great job landlord, in this economy you wanted more and now have an unusable space. I'm sure the owners of clutch will be stopping by soon.

gonna miss the sexy parties

usually the landlord holds onto the liquor license. it usually stays with the property, depends on the lease, however. Horrible situation for the business owner. Seems greedy, but we only know a side of the story.

If the tenant's lease has come to an end, and there are no "renewal options" to extend the lease, the landlord has every right to raise the rent. The tenant's lease is up, simple as that.

With that said, the bar space needs a new concept/operator anyway. As a neighboring resident, we could use a more welcoming concept. (i.e. Mahaffeys a few blocks away)

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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