When you say, “The Near Southside” (or even “the South Side”), the first place you probably think of is West Magnolia Avenue, a pedestrian-friendly quarter-mile strip of vibrant independently owned bars, restaurants, bar/restaurants, retailers, and storefronts. You may even think of Hemphill Street near West Richmond Avenue, a crime-ridden stretch but one with a lot of underground charm thanks to the DIY institution 1919 Hemphill and adult playground The Where House. One area you may not think of — yet — is around South Main Street. There are businesses there, including Amphibian Stage Productions, and some buildings renovated into residences, but after 6 on most nights, the street and its labyrinth of warehouses are dead. And scary.
While this nook might not seem like an ideal spot for socializing, along comes Shipping and Receiving, a new venue/bar specializing in cheap drinks and premier, mostly North Texas-local indie-rock. And because of the people behind the new venture, including co-owner Eddie Vanston, S&R just might be the start of something big on South Main.
“None of us particularly wanted to get into the bar business,” said Vanston, a local developer with several other properties in North Texas, including on the Near Southside, “but people have speculated property [over here], wanting to open something in the future but not wanting to be the first guy to do it. So basically, we’re the sacrificial lamb for the neighborhood.”