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More nightlife options coming to downtown Wilson

Posted on June 23, 2022

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The Wilson Board of Adjustment approved a special use permit on Tuesday for 117 Barnes St., where an entrepreneur plans to open a private club called the Ice & Fuel Co.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

The Wilson Board of Adjustment approved a special use permit on Tuesday for 117 Barnes St., where an entrepreneur plans to open a private club called the Ice & Fuel Co.

bhandgraaf@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7821

A downtown art gallery received local approval Tuesday to add beer and wine sales, while a new bar a few blocks away also got the green light from city officials.

“I think Wilson is in a really exciting place,” said Elizabeth Healey, owner of Iconostar Art Studio at 224 Goldsboro St. “I’ve literally had 30 to 40 visitors a week from Raleigh to Pittsboro coming in because they’ve heard what is happening in Wilson and they want to see it for themselves.”

Wilson Board of Adjustment members quickly approved Healey’s request for a special use permit to add beer and wine sales.

Also appearing on the board’s Tuesday evening agenda was a request for 117 Barnes St., where Taylor Barbee is working to open the Ice & Fuel Co., which was a downtown business in the 1930s.

“It will be more of an adult atmosphere in a private bar with a very unique feel,” Barbee said. “It will have antiques and old Wilson newspapers with articles about bootleggers. It is full of history, but if you want to play shuffleboard or you want to watch TV, you can do that.

“It is kind of a combination of what downtown Wilson is missing.”

Barbee leased the building’s upstairs apartment in April, and construction on the bar is scheduled to start soon. Barbee plans to open the private club this fall.

Both entrepreneurs also will have to apply for state Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission permits in order to serve alcohol.

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