Moose lodge moves to building on Leitersburg Pike

March 16, 2007|by KAREN HANNA

WASHINGTON COUNTY - A Moose's mid-winter migration north has the owner of a new restaurant and an official at the social club feeling bullish about the future.

Moose lodge administrator Mike Stumbaugh said few changes have been made since Funkstown's Moose lodge moved in January into the former Eclipse Nite Club - a one-time bowling alley - at 19330 Leitersburg Pike. At Next Dimensions, a new restaurant, lounge and party center at the former Funkstown Moose lodge, owner Brad Sheldon said business was booming.

State tax records show Dimensions Investments LLC, of 635 S. Potomac St. in Hagerstown, bought the 13,000-square foot Moose lodge at 132 Old National Pike on Jan. 22 for more than $1.3 million.

Since being threatened with losing its liquor license because of unpaid taxes, the Moose lodge is back in the black, said Stumbaugh, who worked behind the bar last week as a couple of customers nursed drinks.


The old lodge was bigger and more expensive to maintain, Stambaugh said. The club leases the new space.

For some members, the lodge in Funkstown was "out of the way," Stumbaugh said.

"It got to the point where people were scared to death to ride over there with all the road blocks on Dual Highway and all that," Stumbaugh said.

Though smaller, the lodge on Leitersburg Pike already has attracted new members, and Stumbaugh said he expects the club to grow.

At least 29 people have been added to the membership rolls since the move, and some members who let their membership lapse while the club was in Funkstown have asked about returning, Stumbaugh said.

The Herald-Mail reported in August that the lodge owed the state nearly $11,000.

Despite a relatively low-key opening, Sheldon said interest in Next Dimensions also was high, even among Moose members, who have made their way back to the bar - now Bullwinkle's - at the old lodge.

"It's been going great. We didn't advertise at all, and they just came out," Sheldon said.

The party center at the facility - it has been completely remodeled - can accommodate 400 people, and the restaurant seats 75 to 100, Sheldon said. The horseshoe bar has room for 50 more.

Sheldon said Next Dimensions' namesake restaurant at 635 S. Potomac St. near Bester Elementary School seats only about 50 people. It still is open, but the Funkstown restaurant offers more variety.

The Next Dimensions menu includes quesadillas, crab cakes, steak, shrimp platters and sandwiches, Sheldon said.

"That's what we wanted to promote. We wanted to promote a not-expensive, but an extensive, menu," Sheldon said.

Next Dimensions is open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and 11 a.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays, Sheldon said.

New memberships at the Moose lodge cost $60 for men and $40 for women, Stumbaugh said.

Though only a couple of people were at the club last week, Stumbaugh said he is hoping the new location attracts a crowd.

"Really, with the building that's going to be going on in the area, it's going to be a godsend, it's going to be a benefit," Stumbaugh said.

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