BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Tiki Barge debate. Some say it’s a relaxing summer spot. Others say it’s like an episode of MTV’s “The Jersey Shore,” and they want it shut down.
Weijia Jiang explains the battle brewing over a local bar.
It’s an upscale, real estate gem in the Inner Harbor, but the Harborview property now has a controversial neighbor many homeowners want to kick out.
“The crowd, suddenly it’s ’ The Jersey Shore.’ I’m waiting for Snooki and JWoww to jump out and start doing cannonballs into the water,” said a Harborview homeowner.
They’re talking about the Tiki Barge, stationed at the end of the marina dock.
Dozens of residents filed a petition with the Baltimore Liquor Board to revoke the bar’s license, claiming there’s public urination, nudity, destruction of property and excessive noise.
A home video posted on YouTube shows an unruly crowd, with one guy mooning his buddies.
The petition even claims one customer simulated sex on a palm tree at the Barge. But the owner insists none of that behavior happened there.
“It was a boat outside our premises where someone exposed their breasts,” said Bud Craven, Tiki Barge owner.
During a packed hearing Thursday night, Craven told the liquor board he remodeled the Barge to be a Baltimore hot spot.
“I was shocked there was complaints,” said Craven. “I was up at that pier that entire summer. At no given time did someone come to me and say ‘Hey we got a problem.’”
As it stands, the bar shares the alcohol permit with two popular restaurants, Tabrizi’s and Sorso. But petitioners want it removed completely. They say customers are simply out of control.
“They are individuals creating a chaotic situation in which my safety is placed in jeopardy. And that, I have a problem with,” said a Harborview resident.
Members of the liquor review board have asked both sides to talk and try to come up with a solution. Meanwhile, they are reviewing the evidence presented at the hearing.
The liquor board is expected to make a decision on the bar by the end of the month.