Dining With Denise Neil

Car vs. bar incident leaves popular Wichita bar a temporary drive-in

Jeremiah Shepherd decorates the board covering the big hole produced on Saturday when someone drove her car into the bar.
Jeremiah Shepherd decorates the board covering the big hole produced on Saturday when someone drove her car into the bar. The Wichita Eagle

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story had an incorrect date when the incident happened.

The Shamrock, a popular bar at 1724 W. Douglas in Delano that’s always the central gathering space for Wichita’s St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, wasn’t intended to be a drive-in.

But after a car v. bar incident last weekend, it now is one – at least temporarily.

Owner Dave Stough said he was in the bar at around 1 a.m. on Saturday. That’s when he saw it.

“I was looking right straight at the front of the building, and all the sudden, I saw headlights, then BAM!” he said.

A woman drove her car straight into the front of the bar, he said, shattering three panes of glass, demolishing the shelving in the front window and busting up some masonry.

The 30-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI, according to police records.

Ever since, Stough has had a giant white board covering the front of the building, which may lead some people to assume he’s boarded up his bar. He took to Facebook on Wednesday morning to assure his customers he was still open.

“We haven’t missed a beat,” he said.

Stough said he’s starting cleanup and dealing with the insurance company, but the board could be in place for a while. His friend, 42 Below co-owner Jeremiah Shepherd, volunteered to decorate the board, and on Wednesday afternoon, he was busy turning it into a sign for “The Shamrock Drive-In.”

Stough said this is the first time his business has ever been the victim of an errant driver.

And he hopes it’s the last.

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