Sully's Busted by City for Overgrown Petunias

Flowers aren't the first danger people take notice of when walking into a bar. Usually its drunken sailors or a possible Herpes outbreak originating from free bar nuts. At Sully's Snowgoose Saloon in Greenwood, STD's are the least of the problems in and around the beer garden, where city officials have cited Sully's for a property violation pertaining to petunias.

The purple petunias hang on planters near the outside upper edge of the garden's fence. But they're hanging out a bit too far for the City of Seattle, which has threatened to fine Sully's $600 if the planters aren't repositioned.

According to owner Sully Gaffney, the city says the planters interfere with pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk outside his saloon. Zoning inspector James Thompson did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

"I've never gotten complaints about those flowers," says Sully of the plants that have been there for more than six months. "If they want me to move them, I'll move them, but I don't understand the problem they have with my petunias."

The purple bandits aren't the only culprits prowling Sully's lately. One customer in October took the liberty of patrolling the beer garden and plucking cigarettes out of patrons' hands, giving the usual health nut rant and even citing Seattle 25-foot law.

Sully had the "Smoking Bandit," as he described him, kicked out of the saloon for good. Unfortunately, the anonymous bandit filed a complaint against Sully's regarding the smoking law and now Sully is being cited for that by the city as well. This one could cost him $370 in fines.

Senator Ken Jacobsen (D) of the 46th Legislative District is a regular at Sully's and offered him a sympathetic ear last Friday night while Jacobsen was sitting down for a beer. "I felt bad for the guy ... the law is what is. If someone wants to come in here and press the issue, what can he do about it?" says the senator.

Sully is filing an appeal with the city to save his petunias, but doesn't have a plan yet about the smoking situation. "If you ask me, I think they're harassing me," said Sully. "But that's probably just me being really paranoid."

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