New Brookland Tavern sits across from new development in West Columbia near the Congaree River. (Photo by Chris Newman/Carolina News and Reporter)
Owners of the New Brookland Tavern were hoping a meeting a potential buyer for their building would allow the music hall to stay there.
But a meeting set for next week to discuss the deal fell through – for now.
Co-owner Mike Lyons. who wants to keep the business alive no matter what, said the meeting fell through. Carlin Thompson, the other co-owner, said he had no comment on the meeting – “yet.”
James Skipper, the estate agent handling the building’s sale, is working to help the business. He said he only wants to sell to someone who would allow the 19-year-old business to stay.
The problem is in the details.
“We have gone under contract with someone to purchase the building, that guy has (the) intent of leaving New Brookland Tavern in there,” Skipper said.
Skipper wouldn’t identify the potential buyer. Lyons said the buyer had to miss the meeting because he wasn’t available.
On websites that list properties, such as ReMax, HuntLLC and Coldwell Banker Homes, the property is listed as having a pending sale.
Music lovers are afraid the business would disappear with the sale of the building. The West Columbia music hall has been owned and operated by Lyons since 2004, offering contemporary music, mostly metal and alternative rock.
“I have been in ongoing conversations with Mike Lyons,” Skipper said. “… He knows that I maintain my loyalties to him.”
Lyons already has signed a lease for a new business, the Attic Lounge at 134 ½ State St., several doors down from New Brookland. The sister location will host a more relaxed crowd compared to New Brookland Tavern’s intense audience.
“The new buyer really wants them to stay, and Mike Lyons wants to stay,” Skipper said.
Skipper said when he listed the building for sale on Aug. 22 for $774,900, he made his intentions with regard to New Brookland clear.
“We have only entertained people who have expressed true interest in wanting to keep them there,” Skipper said.
Thompson on Aug. 21, the day before the property was listed for sale, set up a GoFundMe account. The money was to help raise money to repair the building or to relocate, Thompson said on the fundraising page. The fund as of Friday had raised more than $37,000.
When asked about what would happen to the money raised, Thompson and Lyons said they had no comment.
The State Street Pub is located beneath 134 1/2 State St., the location of the new Attic Lounge. (Photo by Chris Newman/Carolina News and Reporter)
134 1/2 State St., home to the New Brookland’s sister location, Attic Lounge (Photo by Langston Brooks/Carolina News and Reporter)
The lead singer of Angel Dust crowd surfs recently through a New Brookland Tavern crowd. (Courtesy of Audrey Wilson/@audreywilsphotos on Instagram)
New Brookland Tavern’s GoFundMe page. It has raised more than $37,000. (Screen grab from GoFundMe.com, Sept. 8/Carolina News and Reporter)
ABOUT THE JOURNALISTS
Newman is a senior journalism major at the University of South Carolina. His reporting ranges from diversity and inclusion to music made in the Midlands. In his free time, he reads and plays his guitar. His goal is to write about Premier League soccer in England.
Brooks is a senior journalism major at the University of South Carolina. He has covered a diverse range of athletics working as a sports writer for The Daily Gamecock. In his free time, he enjoys trying new foods and spending time with his tri-colored beagle, Dexter.