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Old 10-29-2009, 03:08 AM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,877,631 times
Reputation: 525

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Quote:
Are you thinking of the Toad Stool Inn? It was a motel type of establishment that was in Shively, just south of the Old Bacons bldg. In fact there is a new hotel that has been built on the site now. That's the only Hotel I remember with a restaurant out in front.
That hotel used to be called the Churchill Inn, and it also had a bar and lounge with live music. The Toadstool relocated there, maybe.

The Toadstool Inn was originally across Dixie, east side of Dixie, in an old corner-store style building before relocating to the hotel.


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Quote:
would so love to know some history about that place. I remember Eddie Donaldson's from the midseventies. Geez, what an atmosphere. For me, the place will always be legend.
I used to work at the Great Midwestern Bluegrass Hall around 108 W. Washington. We were the backside of a bunch of buildings that fronted on Main, right beside the Second Street bridge. Up on Main, there was a bar called CityLights, and a gay bar. It was nothing to see a parade of cross-dressers walk thru either bar during the night
The street was Washington Street and it was sort of a little nightlfe era. Touted as maybe a small or incipient "underground Atlanta". The gay bar you are thinking of was the Downtowner, and it had a drag stage and seating area in the back,so there was more drag queens there than in other gay bars. Later a restaurant opened in the basement or Washington St side of the bar, and was pretty popular for awhile.

The people who owned the Downtowner eventually expanded and built that "Connection" bar complex off Market, and closed their old bar.
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:37 AM
 
Location: City - Prefer the country. People shouldn't have to live where they can't see the stars.
98 posts, read 239,444 times
Reputation: 147
Quote:
Downtowner eventually expanded and built that "Connection" bar complex off Market, and closed their old bar.
No kidding? I was always amazed how well everyone mingled in those bars. Very laid back. Eddie's was a mixture of Jazz, drugs, and a hip-type crowd, The Greatmidwestern was mostly beer drinking good ol' boys, and the queens moved thru both bars without any hassle. Sometimes they'd stand around in groups and pose, then they'd giggle and disappear.

I was down there a couple of months ago shooting some photos. The new arena is going to be really huge for that little spot. John & Jason, the guys that own Bourbons Bistro on Frankfort Ave. are working on a Bistro in the old Greatmidwestern space. Several of those old buildings have passageways between them in the basements. I just hope as it develops, that little block can maintain that 'underground' sort of atmosphere. I expect it will end up cookie-cutter urban, and I guess that's better than no development at all.
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Old 10-29-2009, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Louisville, Kentucky
209 posts, read 632,276 times
Reputation: 135
Bourbons Bistro people in the Iron Quarter? You just made my day! If that block fills up and is saved, and if NuLu gets its 'Olmstead strip', downtown is going to start connecting and thriving and just be awesome!
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Old 10-29-2009, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,877,631 times
Reputation: 525
Quote:
No kidding? I was always amazed how well everyone mingled in those bars. Very laid back. Eddie's was a mixture of Jazz, drugs, and a hip-type crowd, The Greatmidwestern was mostly beer drinking good ol' boys, and the queens moved thru both bars without any hassle. Sometimes they'd stand around in groups and pose, then they'd giggle and disappear.
To be honest I was not really that familiar with that Main Street/Washington Street scene. I went to some of these places, but the Great Midwestern was before my time.

I think the Great Midwestern either became or was near another gay bar on Washington Street, called "Faces"...from back in the 1970s? One of those (Faces or Great Midwestern) later became (around 1983/1984) Farnsleys' "Cocksure", run by the son or grandson of the former mayor. I don't know how long it stayed in business as I left town in '84. I recall Farnsley was giving away books there as well as selling beer.

After they tore down most of the north side of Washington Street the "urban canyon" atmosphere went away. Now I guess this is the "Iron Quarter".
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Old 10-30-2009, 02:03 PM
 
4 posts, read 24,610 times
Reputation: 11
I just happened to think of another restaurant that is no more. Does anyone else remember Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor in Oxmoor Mall. My mom took me there for, I think it was my 3rd or 4th birthday (1978 or 1979 for those wondering). That was like the coolest ice cream place when you were a kid
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Old 10-30-2009, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,877,631 times
Reputation: 525
^
Yeah, quite popular in its day (1970s). Second floor of Oxmoor, overlooking the court. It was a chain based in Sacramento, CA. They had huge banana splits, from what I recall.
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Old 10-31-2009, 09:27 AM
 
Location: City - Prefer the country. People shouldn't have to live where they can't see the stars.
98 posts, read 239,444 times
Reputation: 147
JefferyT
Quote:
I went to some of these places, but the Great Midwestern was before my time.
Ouch...

It's odd really, that they call that area the Iron Quarter. Those iron fronts run all up and down Main Street, but these blocks were chock full of whiskey warehouses, distillery offices, and liquor distributors. Someone is redoing the buildings we're talking about into Whiskey Row. And the Urban Bourbon Tour is adding a walking tour pointing out the old whiskey locations.
And yep, I agree about the "urban canyon" feel it used to have. I always thought of that almost-secret darkness as part of the charm (if that's the right word).
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Old 11-01-2009, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,877,631 times
Reputation: 525
Quote:
And yep, I agree about the "urban canyon" feel it used to have. I always thought of that almost-secret darkness as part of the charm (if that's the right word).
Agreed. That's what made that stretch of Washington "special". It reminded me of of pix of industrial/loft areas in NYC, or vignettes of Chicago that I recall, certain industrial areas.

I've been told those cast iron facade buildings marched all the way down Main, and a lot were lost when they did that Riverfront urban renewal project in the late 1960s, between 2nd and 6th. I always wondered what that area between the river, the old wharf, and Main looked like. The old maps show little streets and alleys, so it must have been a real rabbit warren of buildings and passages.

Anyway, lt'll be interesting to see how this "Iron Quarter" turns out.
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Old 11-01-2009, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,877,631 times
Reputation: 525
Speaking of downtown places anyone remember:

Papa Tootsweet? It was the first gyros place in Louisville, but with limited hours. It was on 4th, just north from the Brown. Open only during the week during office hours, so a place for downtown workers and vistors. I think they sold that "Kronos Gyros" from Chicago.

The "old" Jim Porters? On Muhammed Ali between 4th & 5th. Never been but it looked like an old school cocktale lounge/steak house. Im curious what the interior of this place was like.
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Old 11-05-2009, 11:46 AM
 
17 posts, read 94,851 times
Reputation: 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by am2000man View Post
I just happened to think of another restaurant that is no more. Does anyone else remember Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor in Oxmoor Mall. My mom took me there for, I think it was my 3rd or 4th birthday (1978 or 1979 for those wondering). That was like the coolest ice cream place when you were a kid
Speaking of ice cream, I remember one place from the late 70s, maybe early 80s that served these monstrous portions of ice cream designed to serve a family of four or more and they all had original names with words like Lava, Volcano, etc. I honestly can't remember where it was located and it might not have even been in Louisville.
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