HOUSTON, TX– Have you ever been in a bar, and you can’t seem to get away from those “woo girls.” You know the ones we mean. They’re usually younger, new to drinking, and throw their hands up and yell, “WOOO!” at just about everything, before tossing back a shot.
One new Houston hot spot seems to be fed up with them, too. The Kirby Ice House has raised their admission age to 23, icing out out the baby boozers. They’ve even posted a sign by the door: “23 And Up.”
“I saw that,” says first-time patron Bronsen Farrar with a laugh, “and I was like, ‘Thank God I’m actually 24. I can make it in here,’ right?'”
T.J. Jones is a regular at the Kirby Ice House and thinks he knows why this change happened. “Some of the kids that were in here actually looked like kids,” he says, “so that’s one of the reasons, I think.”
Patron Randy Daniels has not seen his twenties for 25 years or more, but he says this switch is wrong, “If they were lowering it to 19, there’d be a big stink about it, so I would be against it.”
A facebook post explained the bar’s decision came from feedback they have received from clientele. That clientele includes folks from nearby River Oaks, so having new drinkers gettin’ crunk probably doesn’t sit well with them.
“I haven’t seen any fights, but I’ve seen people being wild,” says Jones, “But you’re at a club… so it’s supposed to be like that.”
Candace Hudson, 26, says she doesn’t see anything wrong with the bar paring down their patronage, “Being a 21-year-old in my past life, you’re looking for something different. You’re looking for a different kind of crowd.”
Regular Marché Warfield agrees, “There are a lot of bars in this town that after they open, a lot of the younger crowd take it over and the older crowd– I guess I’m older if I’m in my 40s– we go off into somewhere else. So if they wanna keep that crowd… then I can understand why they would do it.”
The bar posted on facebook, “This is legal, and we did not come by the decision lightly.” While a smartass replied: ‘Back to Jackson’s Watering Hole you go, li’l ones.’
What do the folks at Jackson’s, a smaller bar a few minutes down the street on Richmond, say? “I would never want to alienate any crowd, as long as they’re legal age,” says owner Buck Baker. “I would certainly welcome them.”
A few feet away, sitting at the bar enjoying a beer, 22-year-old Austen Clement chimes in on the subject, “The legal age is 21, and I think I should be able to come in if I want.”