Yesteryears: The 'Charlotte Cheers'

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With Charlotte’s continuously expanding nightlife, most local bars and clubs aren’t intimate enough to make friends with the regulars. I worked at a bar downtown, and honestly, we got so busy I only had the chance to make friends with one couple. That’s why Yesteryears is the perfect place for Charlotte nightlife. It’s the kind of place where you’re the bartender’s friend within minutes of walking through the door, and you don’t get many places like that anymore, right?

Nestled in a shopping pavilion on Independence is Yesteryears pub. And from the moment you walk in, you’ll realize it’s a bunch of shit ... no, literally, the owner Steve Hoxworth is a shit collector, and everything he has collected over the years is displayed at the pub. “I like things just the way they are when they come off the farm or wherever they’re from, nothing refurbished,” said Hoxworth.

just some of all the stuff

And there sure is a lot to look at in Yesteryears. Whenever I go somewhere, I like to look for a distinct piece of décor ... at Yesteryears, I found one at every corner I turned. There’s Elvis Presley figurines, old punching bags, random farm animals (fake ones, of course), and signs and license plates (such as a “stop, forest, stop” Alabama plate). But the list keeps on going and going. In fact, every time you visit Yesteryears, I guarantee you’ll find something new to look at, and that’s all a part of what makes the place ... well, a shit-load of fun!

The seating and dining features are just as unique. The atmosphere leaves you wanting to pull up a chair, and make friends with the locals and the bartender — but here, some of those chairs just so happen to be barber chairs.

one of the many barber chairs

The booths are retro, too. In fact, they look as though they come right out of a '50s diner, and knowing the owner, that’s probably where he found them. Another inviting feature is the game room: where there are two pool tables, with one hour of play time costing $5. But if pool isn’t your game, there’s also foosball and air hockey.

When speaking to the owner a little further, I found out the pub had been open since 1996. Hoxworth says he opened with a purpose. “I wanted a place where people can sing, dance, watch TV, play pool or whatever. A place for nice people to come and hang out.” Now he has multiple regulars, whom he says call Yesteryears “the Charlotte Cheers.”

As for the newcomers, there’s a little Yesteryears initiation. Readers, I dare you to ask where the bathrooms are. I won’t say anymore, I don’t want to ruin their joke ... but they’ll getcha with that one. And there’s more where that came from. On karaoke nights, there is a birthday special. “One-eyed Willie performs, I can’t tell you more because I’d be mad if someone had ruined the surprise for me,” said Tara, a bartender.

Speaking of which, karaoke nights are Thursday through Saturday, running from 9 p.m.-1 a.m. on Thursdays, and from 10 p.m.-2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

So if you’re looking for a break from downtown, head on over to the “Charlotte Cheers,” where everybody knows your name, or at least they will by the time you leave.

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