Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Folks at Steamers love this country

A city ordinance banning businesses from flying more than three flags might be the best thing that happened to Steamers, a cozy sportsbar off Albemarle Road.
I live near the bar, and have passed it numerous times, but I never bothered to stop until Saturday. The bar organized a Red, White & Blue party to show that the nine flags that flew atop the bar were to show patriotism, not draw business. Being forced to remove the flags gave owner Bill Nolan more publicity than the nine flags ever did. His dilemma became fodder for talk radio last week after an article ran in the Charlotte Observer.
On Saturday, I stopped by the bar. Every small pub calls itself a Cheers and this one is no different. Tracy Thomas is the den mother and seemed to know everybody there. Many regulars have gone there for more than a dozen years and friendly newcomers are immediately welcome.
Steamers doesn’t look like much from the outside, but inside it's lined with plasma flat screen TVs that show sports. It’s a Panthers and Eagles bar, but I’ve been assured that even my Redskin-lovin’ booty would be welcome. They have karaoke on weekends. Pool tables, darts and foosball games are in the back. In anticipation of an eventual ban on smoking, there’s an enclosed outside patio with heat and fans.
Steamers serves the typical range of bar food, but get this: Burgers are served on wheat buns!
If you go, ask for Tracy and prepare to find a new place to hang.