If you rebuild it, they will come

Our favorite local pet store, and one of our favorite local businesses run by some of our favorite local people, is reopening this weekend!

Pet World suffered an awful fire last May that devastated not only the owners and staff, but the entire Lawrence community. This weekend is the much-anticipated grand reopening of the store.

We’re super excited to be involved in the special private unveiling party on Friday night from 6-8 p.m.! Pet World sold almost 900 t-shirts as “tickets” to the private party. Dave created a special tropical drink for the event, and longtime bartender and Pet World customer Coleen will be there to serve it up.

If you didn’t purchase one of the special “rebuilding team” t-shirts, don’t worry—you’ll get to see the store bright and early on Saturday morning!

Lost and Found: Sandbar Shark Board

A few weeks ago, Dave celebrated his birthday with a fun night out on the town, taking in a show at the Lied Center, visiting fellow downtown bar John Brown Underground and then, of course, partying at the Sandbar into the early hours of the morning. He probably even danced on the bar.

It was a great birthday, until he realized that some joker had stolen the shark board photo-opp that resides outside the door.

Even worse, it happened right on our watch: the bar was open at the time, but the doorman (who will remain nameless) had stepped away and it was one of those rare times that no one was in line.

Sandbar shark board
Happy birthday, Dave.

The news spread quickly the next day, thanks to the power of social media. The local paper even covered the theft; our apologies to Sgt. Myrone Grady of the police department, who had the unfortunate task of responding to the LJW’s request for information about the shenanigans. We hope you have a good sense of humor, sir. If it makes you feel any better, I insisted that Dave file a police report; he seemed reluctant to report something seemingly so silly.

We drove the alleys of downtown Lawrence, hoping the thief was lazy enough to drop it off behind a dumpster, but no luck.

We hoped pictures would surface on Facebook; after all, the board’s pretty big and hard to hide, and what are you going to do with it, if not take pictures of it and with it? But nothing turned up.

Time passed, and we thought we’d never see our beloved board again. You probably don’t know this, but Dave and Justin, our art director-turned-bartender, toiled for hours creating that thing.

Then, one day, Phil, our sometimes-Friday bartender, texted Dave a picture and asked if we were missing something. Phil’s been pretty busy with his day job, so he was probably out of the loop on the goings-on at the bar. Apparently someone he knew had found the board on a country road and sent Phil a picture of it. (Minor correction to the LJW article: It wasn’t a friend of Dave’s who discovered it.)

Get this: on a country road near the Outhouse.

So, we’re assuming that thieves went on a joyride that night, looking for different entertainment than our little bar can provide, and the board either flew out of their vehicle on the bumpy road, or they realized they wouldn’t be able to show off their prize to anyone. Or maybe they just hate us, who knows.

But the good news is, we finally have the board back, and while it has some minor damage, it’s nothing that can’t be repaired. And this time, Dave said he’ll make sure it’s locked down whenever it’s on duty.

P.S. The recovery was big enough news that the LJW posted a follow-up story, and a Kansan reporter stopped by the bar to do a story on it, too, so watch for that one.

Low-cal tropical drink, coming right up

It’s finally here: the tropical drink that doesn’t cost an entire days’ worth of calories in one drink.

Dave has experimented for a long time with diet versions of our tropical drinks, after listening to one too many of you order vodka sodas. Seriously, how can you drink those things?

He unveiled his concoction last week: Little Mermaid low-calorie tropical drink at the Sandbar in Lawrence, Kansas | www.thesandbar.comWe tried to think of a “skinny” name for it that wouldn’t get us sued, but bartender Alex quickly christened it the Little Mermaid. Perfect! Just don’t tell Disney.

The new drink certainly tastes good—but perhaps the best part? It’s only 103 calories. You’re welcome.

Dave can’t hide his parking ticket now

Our good friend Big Mike surprised us with a funny picture the other day: a screenshot of Google Earth’s view of the Sandbar.

What’s funny about that? Nothing, unless you happen to know that the gray SUV parked in front of the bar belongs to Dave—and if you look closely, you can see a gift from the City of Lawrence parking department.

Google Earth screen shot | www.thesandbar.com

Like any good downtown Lawrence employee, Dave does his part to keep the city of Lawrence running by accumulating his fair share of little yellow envelopes. Normally, he pays the $3 ticket before its due and his wife is never the wiser.

But sometimes he gets busted. Like when Google Earth captures evidence of his overtime parking.

P.S. Congrats to Big Mike, his lovely wife Anne and their little boy, who recently welcomed another bundle of joy to their family!

Sandbar #IceBucketChallenge

Sandbar #IceBucketChallenge

The ALS ice bucket challenge has taken social media by storm, and if you haven’t seen videos of kids, adults and even dogs being drenched with buckets of ice water (and, in some cases, just ice), then you’ve been living under a rock. Or you don’t have a Facebook account. (Looking at you, Mr. Regular Customer who will remain nameless.)

Anyway, the phenomenon basically consists of someone dumping a bucket of ice water over their head and then nominating one or fifteen of their friends to do the same, with the whole event captured on video and then shared on social networks.

The nominees have 24 hours to take the challenge or else they’re expected to make a donation to the ALS Association. But, we also know that many of those taking the challenge are also donating—so they’re definitely putting their money where their mouth is.

In fact, as of today, the ALS Association reports they’ve received $22.9 million in donations during the time period July 29-August 19, compared to $1.9 million during the same time period last year. What’s more, the donations have been made by existing donors and more than 453,000 new donors.That’s amazing, people.

It’s no surprise that some of our Sandbar staff and friends were called to the challenge. Check out our video below, featuring managing partner Dave; longtime regular customers Curtis and Brandon; and current bartender and longtime Sandbar art director Justin.


Andrew, consider yourself lucky that you’re on your honeymoon.

Even if you’re tired of seeing the ice bucket challenge videos dominating your newsfeed, you can’t deny that it’s truly accomplished a goal of raising awareness of ALS—and raising some serious cash.

Thanks to Michelle for filming the event!