Thursday, April 28 — The Chrome Cat may have finally run through its nine lives.
The Old Town bar — a popular LGBT hangout† — announced via Twitter and Facebook this morning that it is closing for good Saturday.
"Come down and say goodbye to your Old Town Cats," the Twitter message reads. A Facebook note promises, "1/2 off everything Friday & Saturday. CASH ONLY! Also if you would like to own a piece of CC history, come make an offer ... it's all for sale! Signs, cat figurines, posters ... everything ... ."
The Chrome Cat opened in January 2009 and has weathered some bumps in the past two years. Last September, a "Save the Kitty" benefit was organized to pay landlord Tom Donell $13,000 in back rent. That bill was paid, according to manager Melissa "Inky" Kim, but the Cat still faced an uncertain future, which led to the decision to close.
"We're not gonna renew our liquor license, which expires Saturday at midnight," Kim said. "Obviously, we've had financial issues, and we had to take a look at our possibilities versus what we had to pay out. So we decided it would be best to close on our own."
Kim said tax issues were at the center of the closing. "You can't fight the government," she said. "They were going to negotiate, but the whole 'support your local artists' idea wasn't really working out for us. It's sad, but we had a great run."†