Doc Howard's Lounge temporarily closes due to lapsed liquor license

12/14/2012 5:30 AM

12/14/2012 5:30 AM

WICHITA — It looked like some critics of Doc Howard's Lounge might get their wish to have the bar close.

The Old Town bar shut down this week because its liquor license expired Dec. 10.

"Yeah, I'm sure there are plenty of people out there that will be excited," says owner Bryan Shapiro.

The situation is only temporary, though.

The city won't renew the license until Shapiro gets a fire door for an opening at the bar, which has frequently been in the news due to fights and other disturbances in and around the business.

Shapiro says it's taking a while to get the door.

"We weren't prepared for it because we've never been asked for it before," he says. "Ten years, 10 inspections, nobody mentions the door. Now they mention the door?"

Doc Howard's has been in business almost three years, but Shapiro has had a bar of some sort in the space for a decade.

"It is what it is, and we do everything we can to comply," he says. "I don't think we have an operational issue here."

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About Carrie Rengers

Carrie Rengers joined The Eagle's Business team in 2002 despite her inability to even balance a checkbook. Fortunately for her, and readers, her Have You Heard? blog is about business scoops and contains lots of news but almost no math.

A Michigan native, Carrie’s father was quite tragically transferred to Little Rock, Ark., in the middle of her sophomore year of high school. To make matters worse, her parents put her in a girls school. She recovered, though, and went on to enjoy being an English major at Hendrix College (the Harvard of the Ozarks, don’t you know). She worked for the weekly Arkansas Business and the statewide daily Arkansas Democrat-Gazette before moving to Wichita to be with her favorite writer and cook, husband Joe Stumpe.

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