All's mostly quiet now that Legends bar has closed


Legends Sports Bar and Grill is shown on Sept. 29, 2011.

Doug Finger/Staff photographer
Published: Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 7:06 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 26, 2012 at 7:06 p.m.

The residents of Bivens Arm have had quiet weekends again since Legends Sports Bar & Grill shut down, ending the after-hours parties and the boom of car stereos from its patrons, save for the occasional raucous crowd outside the 24-hour IHOP across the street.

Tony DiCarlo, whose house backs up to the former Legends at 3610 SW 13th St., said large crowds outside IHOP disturbed the peace on New Year's Eve and again last Friday, but that ended quickly after he called police.



"Legends is dead. That's all I care about," DiCarlo said. "So life is back to fairly normal, because it was out of control there for a while."

Legends opened Sept. 16 in the building that had housed a Sonny's, Jade Gardens and most recently Merlion. It immediately drew complaints from neighbors about loud car stereos, loitering, alcohol use and parking that spilled into the adjacent neighborhood between 2-6 a.m. on weekends. The Alachua County Sheriff's Office issued numerous citations for loud music from cars and made several arrests in the parking lot on weapons and narcotics charges.

The Sheriff's Office also filed a criminal complaint against Legends owner Dan Delva on two counts of sale of alcohol without a license after undercover deputies were able to buy cocktails in the nightclub. The nightclub closed in early November.

Spencer Mann of the State Attorney's Office said the complaint has been assigned to a prosecutor to review.

At a Nov. 3 code enforcement hearing, the code board agreed to fine the club $1,000 for each day it operated as an entertainment facility without a special exception permit. At that same meeting, an attorney for the landlord served Legends' owners with papers to start eviction proceedings.

The club never opened again.

Norman Bledsoe, attorney for property owner East West Best International, said Legends agreed to leave the premises.

Bledsoe said his client thought he was renting to a sports bar and moved quickly to evict after receiving a cease and desist order from code enforcement.

Legends also paid the costs of county code enforcement's work imposed at the Nov. 3 hearing, said Rick Wolf of the city's Department of Growth Management.

Delva, a 23-year-old Fort Lauderdale resident, could not be reached for comment.

At the hearing, he and a partner said they live out of town and were unaware of the problems, which they blamed on former managers.

Bledsoe said his client is seeking a restaurant tenant for the property. The building is listed for sale.

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