Bottoms Up closes doors, reopens as The Wall

2013-08-24 00.18.01
Patrick Hobbs / Cluster Staff

Bottoms Up, a bar on Cherry Street, closed it doors for good early in August.

“Bottoms Up was open just shy of four years. We opened it to be a Mercer college bar and it turned out that we started to get away from that and we didn’t like where it was going,” said Joey Burtner, owner of Bottoms Up.

Burtner graduated from Mercer in 2006 with a degree in accounting in finance from Stetson School of Business.

“It helped me a lot in the business aspect of (running a bar). The aspect of getting people to come in and have fun was not taught in school at all,” said Burtner.

Burtner said Bottoms Up was attracting a crowd that was older and less collegiate than he would have liked.

“We had a bye bye Bottoms Up party and had a couple regular customers help tear down the wall,” said Burtner.

The aftermath of the night’s demolition exposed the original brick wall on the left side of the bar. Five days of remodeling and $5,000 later, the bar, now renamed The Wall, opened for business.

“I thought (the name) was kind of catchy,” said Burtner.

Burtner said the new name for Bottoms Up was inspired by a bar from another college town.

The Wall also received a new paint job of Mercer orange and black.

“We’re trying to get back to that Mercer theme,” said Burtner. “(We’re) gearing up for the football term.

Everyone’s pretty gung-ho about (football). It’s going to bring a lot of people to Macon and give people something else to do on the weekend,” said Burtner.

In line with the bar’s new theme, Burtner is instituting an array of promotions geared toward college students.

“We have a drink card and you have a year to drink everything on the drink card. Once you finish everything on the drink card, you get a free T-shirt (and) your name on a little plaque that goes on a brick on the wall. So that’ll be your brick and you’ll get a mug and that’ll be your mug,” Burtner said.

People who complete the drink card get a special discount on all future purchases at The Wall.

“I remember when I was an undergrad, it was the cool thing to go to the Rookery and sign your name on their wall,” said Burtner.

Burtner said the mugs and plaques will give his customers a chance to establish a legacy. They can come back years later and say “that was me.”

Burtner is also starting a running club for The Wall. Every week he’ll host a 5K, after which the runners can come back to The Wall to get free pasta. If a runner participates in enough 5ks in a row, they get a free T-shirt.

“I’m trying to get involved in the community more. I’m trying to get my employees involved more,” said Burtner.

Burtner said the date of the grand reopening of The Wall will be later next week.