A Not-So-Looney Night

6 Jan


Looney's Pub South in Maple Lawn


Located in the snazzy Maple Lawn shopping center, Looney’s Pub South serves as one of the most popular drinking holes in Howard County, claiming the livers and minds of many locals. Three things come to mind when we think of Looney’s Pub: cheap drinks, raucous crowds, and enough TVs to put Best Buy to shame.

We ventured to Looney’s for their Wednesday night drink specials – $1 Miller drafts, $2 Miller bottles, $2.50 house drinks and half-priced bottles of wine. Because of Looney’s reputation, we expected to have a fairly rowdy night. Much to our surprise, we found Looney’s to be relatively subdued. There wasn’t much of a crowd, which was great for easy bar access but, at the same time, left us wanting more.

Some Other Lows
Looney’s was out of their Miller Light on draft [thankfully, they knocked the bottles down to $1].

The Dogfish Head 90 Minute came out of the keg warm.

After the hostess told us that we could get the drink specials at a booth, the server explained to us that we, in fact, could not. Instead, we’d have to walk up to the bar to order them…from her, as she was also the bartender. Confused? So were we.   

On the Brightside
Their crab pretzel appetizer was pretty impressive and more than enough to share between three people. Plus, there was a really cool fish tank behind the bar. And hey, who can complain about dollar bottles? 

Our collection.

At 10pm, DJ Ray began his set with some Top 40 hits, although a little too loudly for the sparse crowd. The dance floor was basically empty all night – but likely because there wasn’t really a dance floor at all. The area was filled with pub tables, interfering with our feeble attempts to groove…and causing some confusion. [“Hey, did you just slap my butt?” “No, dude, you just ran into the chair.”]

Speaking of butts – our fondest memory of the night involved the excessive appearance of one dancer’s butt crack. In fact, we suspect that this fleshy reveal was completely intentional. Not only did she fail to make any attempt to fix the situation, but also we watched as her date took pictures  of another friend posing with her smiling face alongside the aforementioned butt crack. Thanks for the memories, Looney’s.

Until Next Time
From what we’ve heard and experienced from other nights at this fine establishment, last night fails to fully represent the typical Looney’s experience. Maybe this means that weeknights at Looney’s are just hit or miss – but we’d like to hear from you. Comment below and let us know about your nights at Looney’s!

Either way, we’ll be back to give Looney’s Pub South another shot.


Union Jack’s of Columbia – Thursday Night British Invasion

1 Jan

So if you haven’t yet heard of this new HoCo hot spot, don’t be too hard on yourself. Union Jack’s of Columbia first came into business during the spring of 2010, staking its claim off of Little Patuxent Parkway. We visited this British-themed restaurant/bar hybrid for its popular Thursday night drink specials. They offer $1 Miller Light bottles from 7pm until 2am, half-priced bottles of wine and a Power Hour with $1 U-Call-Its (any drink but top shelf for a dollar).

The Night
With such great atmosphere and drink specials, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Union Jack’s was bustling that night. This might be true of any major bar in Howard County – but expect to see anyone and everyone on these popular nights. It’s like the Ghosts of HoCo Past up in there. From former teachers to former lovers, long-lost childhood friends to long-lost sworn enemies, it would be quite the feat to not recognize someone you know at Union Jack’s. [Afraid of those kind of awkward moments? Have no fear – it was easy to stay pretty secluded in one of the private pub booths].

Our server, Darryl, was awesome. I’m sure many other servers would’ve scowled at our relocating and cheap requests (“Why, yes, we will continue to drink only Miller Light until the Power Hour, at which point, we will suddenly reveal that we actually want Stoli Raz and Captain Morgan.”)  Yet, Darryl was a champ and made our night very enjoyable. He even brought us warm tortilla chips to munch on,  although the kitchen was closed.

Also, DJ Chris Tharp was there to spin from 10pm until close, getting all the wild young ones to hit the dance floor. You could feel the heavy bass in your seats.

Some Lows
Come to find out, Union Jack’s has decided to no longer offer a late night menu (at least on Thursdays). It was a little disappointing to discover that we couldn’t get hot pizzas to accompany our cold drinks. There was also some confusion over the time of the Power Hour. Although the website says it’s from 9-10, our server informed us that it was actually from 10-11. Even though we think 10pm is a better time for the Power Hour, we wish we would’ve known beforehand.

Despite the hot beats, the dance floor situation was a tad awkward. There was a lone table of older customers on the dance floor, which likely minimized the freakiness that could’ve ensued.

Memorable Moment
Brief background – Linda recently had a party at Union Jack’s, complete with a giant green dinosaur pinata. Upon impact, it sprayed about 20 pounds of candy throughout the entire pool room. The manager stopped by our table on Thursday night to inform us that Linda’s party resulted in the adoption of a strict new policy forever banning pinatas of any kind from Union Jack’s.

“Linda’s a legend.” – UJ’s Manager

Union Jack's pub area. Credit: http://bit.ly/hYnhnn

Happy New Year’s! And happy birthday to HoCo Hangover!

1 Jan

What’s up HoCo hooligans?!

It’s the new year, and we decided it’s time to start something we’ve been wanting to do for a while. We’ve created this blog as a forum to discuss the nightlife in Howard County, Md., and to share our stories. And what better day to launch HoCo Hangover than Jan. 1, National Hangover Day?

So, this will be the place to come for an overview of all the Howard County hot spots’ perks, from drink specials to atmosphere and other notable features. We’ll also be sure to throw in some juicy stories and funny/awkward moments from our excursions as well.

We don’t claim to be the experts on HoCo nightlife, so we need your help in our journalistic endeavors. Please comment about your own experiences at the different venues we visit. Our best night out at a certain bar might have been your worst night there, and if so, we want to hear about it. Besides, some of your stories are probably more exciting than ours.

We’ve created a “bucket list” of all the bars that we plan to hit for HoCo Hangover. If there’s a venue that you think we’ve missed, or even a venue that you think we should check out again on another night, give us a shout at hocohangover@gmail.com.

Another thing: we promise to do our best to blog about our experiences the morning after, no matter how hungover we might be. Don’t worry – we will be sure to take notes all night to supplement what few memories we may have in the morning.