PDA

View Full Version : Galaxy Billiards in Silver Spring, MD


inside_english
05-10-2009, 09:16 AM
So I went to this place with a colleague on Friday night just on a whim. I have been here twice before but I summed it up as a big bar with pool tables and decided it is not the kind of place I would choose to play "serious" pool.

Anyway, here is a snippet from a Washington Post article about the place:

"By the numbers, Silver Spring's Galaxy is truly impressive: 27 beautiful Brunswick tables; a 60-foot bar snakes down one side of the room; 35 36-inch televisions are strategically placed overhead; and a huge projection screen broadcasts key sporting events near a pair of dart lanes. There's plenty of room for happy-hour crowds, or the groups that hang out here before or after movies at the nearby AFI Silver Theatre or Majestic theaters.

While it won't win any awards for design -- a sea of green felt, televisions, cherry-colored walls and exposed pipes overhead, Galaxy looks "nice," more than anything else -- that's not really the point.

There's room between tables for tricky shots, as well as clear sightlines so you can watch your basketball game from almost anywhere and plenty of high tables scattered throughout the billiards and bar areas.

Pool halls really are the great equalizers -- Galaxy fills a need by attracting a mix of black, white and Latino pool players and sports fans, and serves home-style empanadas alongside burgers and neon-orange "galactic wings" on its menu. (Skip the wings, but the beef empanadas are pretty tasty.) Service can be a little chaotic if generally friendly, and managers regularly cruise the room, asking how everything is going.

Happy hour is a great time to visit; from 3:30 to 7, deals include $2.50 pints and $7 pitchers of domestic beer, with imports running a little bit higher, and some discounted appetizers. Pool costs $8 an hour for one player, $12 for two, $14 for three and $15 for four. (Add a buck per hour on weekends.) Get practicing -- there are plans afoot for regular tournaments and weekly leagues.

Seemingly destined to be Silver Spring's sports bar and pool hall of choice, Galaxy is worth a visit -- especially if you're looking to watch the big game and shoot pool in a smoke-free environment."

So, if you happen to visit Maryland one day and are going to be close to D.C. or VA you can check it out.

8661 Colesville Rd, Level 1 - City Place Mall, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Telephone: (301) 495-0081

Eruditass
05-10-2009, 09:24 AM
i thought I ha dheard of this place before, i'm halfway between there and big daddy's, which is great. if they start holding tournaments and leagues, let me know! i just hope it ain't apa!

JAM
05-10-2009, 09:28 AM
I've been to Galaxy Billiards. When they first opened, Jeanette Lee came and put on an exhibition. I didn't get to see it, but I do know the owner of USA Billiards' daughter went, and she got to play Jeanette a game. I'm not sure whether Jeanette let her win, but she did beat Jeanette, which for this young lady was the thrill of a lifetime.

Every time I have gone to this pool room, it was pretty dead in the water as far as pool playing. When Champions pool room on Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring closed, some of those "regulars" went to Galaxy, and I got to see some of my old pool buddies there, which was cool.

They used to have a Tuesday or Thursday night $20-entry-fee, 9-ball tournament there, but I think they stopped doing that.

There are MANY tables, and you can sweat the games from anywhere. The menu is also GREAT. It has a nice variety of food items.

I have not been to Galaxy in the last two years, but this thread is very timely because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament. Thanks for reminding me about Galaxy, as it's almost in my own back yard, about a 5-minute drive from my house! :wink:

SpiderWebComm
05-10-2009, 09:54 AM
I've been to Galaxy Billiards twice within the last year just to swing by. I really enjoyed the place. They have buttons on the tables that you can push to summon a waitress, which is cool. The food was excellent as well.

I walked in twice to find a pick-up game and matched-up with two of the nicest old guys in the world. Nice people there.

Dave

DelaWho???
05-10-2009, 01:31 PM
$8 per hour sounds a bit steep for table time, is this the norm?


:)

JAM
05-10-2009, 02:08 PM
$8 per hour sounds a bit steep for table time, is this the norm?


:)

It's about 2 or 3 miles from the D.C. line. Everything gets more expensive, the closer you get to D.C. :(

MitchDAZB
05-10-2009, 02:27 PM
They have a lunch special everyday from 11am to 2pm. An $8 tab per person gets you those three hours of table time free.

DelaWho???
05-11-2009, 04:26 AM
It's about 2 or 3 miles from the D.C. line. Everything gets more expensive, the closer you get to D.C. :(

I used to live in Dale City, but that was 10yrs ago. It was definitely cheaper to live here in Delaware. The only real pool hall in the state costs about $5/hr with "Happy Time" specials week nights which is like 3 hrs for $6 per person.

I hate to say it but I rarely go there anymore. They used to have a Wednesday 9 ball tourney, but the couple times I showed up they didn't have enough people to play.

The room is beautiful with great equipment, but I believe it will fail because of location, lack of liquor license and lack of advertising/promotion. They have about 10 gold crowns a couple connely, and 4 of the nicest gabriels I'e seen or had the pleasure of playing on. He even has 6 valley bar boxes to attract the bangers.

I am working on a 3 yr plan. I hope he can stay in business long enough to give me time to get up and running. A lot of nice equipment to purchase if he fails. I hope to do it right


:)

IntoTheRail
05-11-2009, 04:56 AM
"Pool halls really are the great equalizers"

stole a line from PHJ....

JAM
05-11-2009, 05:09 AM
I used to live in Dale City, but that was 10yrs ago. It was definitely cheaper to live here in Delaware. The only real pool hall in the state costs about $5/hr with "Happy Time" specials week nights which is like 3 hrs for $6 per person.

I hate to say it but I rarely go there anymore. They used to have a Wednesday 9 ball tourney, but the couple times I showed up they didn't have enough people to play.

The room is beautiful with great equipment, but I believe it will fail because of location, lack of liquor license and lack of advertising/promotion. They have about 10 gold crowns a couple connely, and 4 of the nicest gabriels I'e seen or had the pleasure of playing on. He even has 6 valley bar boxes to attract the bangers.

I am working on a 3 yr plan. I hope he can stay in business long enough to give me time to get up and running. A lot of nice equipment to purchase if he fails. I hope to do it right


:)

We have lost a lot of pool rooms in my area in recent times.

Champions in Silver Spring, MD
Champions in Rockville,MD
USA Billiards in Laurel, MD
Bill and Billie's -- or is it Jack and Jill's? -- in Glen Burnie, MD
Bill and Billie's in Arnold, MD
Babes on Wisconsin Avenue NW in DC

In this area, especially in Metro DC, the rent is so high for pool rooms that they are unable to survive on pool table rents alone. They have to sell food, alcohol, have loud music, and many TVs for sports fans in order to survive in some areas.

What I have noticed in my travels, visiting many pool rooms on the East Coast, is that the pool rooms situated near colleges and universities seem to do well.

It is important to offer good food and beverages, especially NON-ALCOHOLIC choices. Otherwise, people will just leave the pool room when they get hungry and go elsewhere. Some of the BEST pool rooms I have been to served no alcohol, but this is not an option for pool room located in high-rent districts.

The leagues are where it's at today for pool rooms, I think. They can keep the pool room business BOOMING every day of the week. The pool rooms without the leagues are not as financially sound as those with leagues, IMHO.

Also, many pool rooms offer FREE pool during the day, if you ring up a minimal amount in a tab, like buying lunch. This is a great way to attract prospective pool enthusiasts in a room and keep them coming back. Before long, a pool room will build up a set of "regulars," much like a neighborhood gathering place.

One more thing, cleanliness and getting rid of odors is key. There is nothing worse than walking into a pool room and having it smell like urine, vomit, and body odor. In fact, I have been to some pool rooms where I was not comfortable using the rest room. They might as well have taken out the toilet and put a tree in there. The smell of it all too! :eek:

Location, advertisements, pool events for players of all caliber, cleanliness, good food and non-alcoholic beverage options are just some things I can think of that will help keep a pool room afloat.

In D.C. area, though, I think I'd rather open up a Starbucks joint than a pool room. It's just too costly.

Build it and they will come. It is possible to have a successful pool room, but one must have business sense, maybe buy their own land, and do some of the things I suggested above. JMHO, FWIW! :)

I think the best pool room I have ever read about is this one -- http://www.parlorbilliards.com/photo.html -- in Bellevue, Washington. I don't know how successful they are, but, man, that's my kind of pool room! :wink:

Jerry Yost
05-11-2009, 05:24 AM
I've been to Galaxy Billiards. When they first opened, Jeanette Lee came and put on an exhibition. I didn't get to see it, but I do know the owner of USA Billiards' daughter went, and she got to play Jeanette a game. I'm not sure whether Jeanette let her win, but she did beat Jeanette, which for this young lady was the thrill of a lifetime.

Every time I have gone to this pool room, it was pretty dead in the water as far as pool playing. When Champions pool room on Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring closed, some of those "regulars" went to Galaxy, and I got to see some of my old pool buddies there, which was cool.

They used to have a Tuesday or Thursday night $20-entry-fee, 9-ball tournament there, but I think they stopped doing that.

There are MANY tables, and you can sweat the games from anywhere. The menu is also GREAT. It has a nice variety of food items.

I have not been to Galaxy in the last two years, but this thread is very timely because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament. Thanks for reminding me about Galaxy, as it's almost in my own back yard, about a 5-minute drive from my house! :wink:

...because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament. Does this mean we're going to start seeing Kieth back in action? Sure hope so.

JAM
05-11-2009, 05:31 AM
...because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament. Does this mean we're going to start seeing Kieth back in action? Sure hope so.

Jerry, long time no see. Yep, we'll be out and about this year on the local pool scene. After he gets a few thousand balls under his belt, we'll be starting our new-and-improved pool journey at Orange Ball and First Break, then on to Joss and other regional tours, and hopefully competing in this year's U.S. Open. There's a lot of logistical factors involved.

Hey, I finally quit smoking. Can you believe it? One year and three months clean! :grin-square:

Jerry Yost
05-11-2009, 06:10 AM
Hope you both are doing well and I look forward to seeing you around.

beetle
05-11-2009, 08:14 AM
because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament.

Now that's what I want to hear!!!

mcdpool
05-11-2009, 02:11 PM
Champion's in Rockville is now Winston's Billiards. Place is empty most of the time, more of a dive bar at this point than anything else.

Orange Billiards on Rockville Pike isn't bad. Being the boxing fan that I am, it's great that they show the big fights.

JAM
05-12-2009, 02:27 AM
Now that's what I want to hear!!!

Who's been winning at Orange Ball? :)

JAM
05-12-2009, 02:28 AM
Champion's in Rockville is now Winston's Billiards. Place is empty most of the time, more of a dive bar at this point than anything else.

Are they still having the Tuesday night $20-entry-fee tournaments there in Laurel?

Did Mr. Lee ever get a new replacement pool room for USA Billiards?

inside_english
05-12-2009, 03:15 AM
We have lost a lot of pool rooms in my area in recent times.

Champions in Silver Spring, MD
Champions in Rockville,MD
USA Billiards in Laurel, MD
Bill and Billie's -- or is it Jack and Jill's? -- in Glen Burnie, MD
Bill and Billie's in Arnold, MD
Babes on Wisconsin Avenue NW in DC

In this area, especially in Metro DC, the rent is so high for pool rooms that they are unable to survive on pool table rents alone. They have to sell food, alcohol, have loud music, and many TVs for sports fans in order to survive in some areas.

What I have noticed in my travels, visiting many pool rooms on the East Coast, is that the pool rooms situated near colleges and universities seem to do well.

It is important to offer good food and beverages, especially NON-ALCOHOLIC choices. Otherwise, people will just leave the pool room when they get hungry and go elsewhere. Some of the BEST pool rooms I have been to served no alcohol, but this is not an option for pool room located in high-rent districts.

The leagues are where it's at today for pool rooms, I think. They can keep the pool room business BOOMING every day of the week. The pool rooms without the leagues are not as financially sound as those with leagues, IMHO.

Also, many pool rooms offer FREE pool during the day, if you ring up a minimal amount in a tab, like buying lunch. This is a great way to attract prospective pool enthusiasts in a room and keep them coming back. Before long, a pool room will build up a set of "regulars," much like a neighborhood gathering place.

One more thing, cleanliness and getting rid of odors is key. There is nothing worse than walking into a pool room and having it smell like urine, vomit, and body odor. In fact, I have been to some pool rooms where I was not comfortable using the rest room. They might as well have taken out the toilet and put a tree in there. The smell of it all too! :eek:

Location, advertisements, pool events for players of all caliber, cleanliness, good food and non-alcoholic beverage options are just some things I can think of that will help keep a pool room afloat.

In D.C. area, though, I think I'd rather open up a Starbucks joint than a pool room. It's just too costly.

Build it and they will come. It is possible to have a successful pool room, but one must have business sense, maybe buy their own land, and do some of the things I suggested above. JMHO, FWIW! :)

I think the best pool room I have ever read about is this one -- http://www.parlorbilliards.com/photo.html -- in Bellevue, Washington. I don't know how successful they are, but, man, that's my kind of pool room! :wink:
Unfortunately you forgot:

Blue Jay Cue Club in Ellicott City, which has been open since 1910. (where I started)
Jack & Jill's was in Glen Burnie and it is closed.
And don't forget Hagerstown Billiards & Cafe.

So, the news is even worse...:(

inside_english
05-12-2009, 03:17 AM
Are they still having the Tuesday night $20-entry-fee tournaments there in Laurel?

Did Mr. Lee ever get a new replacement pool room for USA Billiards?
I don't think so. I think his brother has a pool room inside Security Mall in Woodlawn, but that place is straight-up ghetto now, so they won't be seeing me.

inside_english
05-12-2009, 03:18 AM
I've been to Galaxy Billiards. When they first opened, Jeanette Lee came and put on an exhibition. I didn't get to see it, but I do know the owner of USA Billiards' daughter went, and she got to play Jeanette a game. I'm not sure whether Jeanette let her win, but she did beat Jeanette, which for this young lady was the thrill of a lifetime.

Every time I have gone to this pool room, it was pretty dead in the water as far as pool playing. When Champions pool room on Georgia Avenue in Silver Spring closed, some of those "regulars" went to Galaxy, and I got to see some of my old pool buddies there, which was cool.

They used to have a Tuesday or Thursday night $20-entry-fee, 9-ball tournament there, but I think they stopped doing that.

There are MANY tables, and you can sweat the games from anywhere. The menu is also GREAT. It has a nice variety of food items.

I have not been to Galaxy in the last two years, but this thread is very timely because we are going out next week to practice pool for an upcoming tournament. Thanks for reminding me about Galaxy, as it's almost in my own back yard, about a 5-minute drive from my house! :wink:
By the way, a little birdie told me some of the Latinos down there are ripe for the plucking...:)

So if hustling's your thing, this place is overflowing with fresh fish.

inside_english
05-12-2009, 03:21 AM
We have lost a lot of pool rooms in my area in recent times.

Champions in Silver Spring, MD
Champions in Rockville,MD
USA Billiards in Laurel, MD
Bill and Billie's -- or is it Jack and Jill's? -- in Glen Burnie, MD
Bill and Billie's in Arnold, MD
Babes on Wisconsin Avenue NW in DC

In this area, especially in Metro DC, the rent is so high for pool rooms that they are unable to survive on pool table rents alone. They have to sell food, alcohol, have loud music, and many TVs for sports fans in order to survive in some areas.

What I have noticed in my travels, visiting many pool rooms on the East Coast, is that the pool rooms situated near colleges and universities seem to do well.

It is important to offer good food and beverages, especially NON-ALCOHOLIC choices. Otherwise, people will just leave the pool room when they get hungry and go elsewhere. Some of the BEST pool rooms I have been to served no alcohol, but this is not an option for pool room located in high-rent districts.

The leagues are where it's at today for pool rooms, I think. They can keep the pool room business BOOMING every day of the week. The pool rooms without the leagues are not as financially sound as those with leagues, IMHO.

Also, many pool rooms offer FREE pool during the day, if you ring up a minimal amount in a tab, like buying lunch. This is a great way to attract prospective pool enthusiasts in a room and keep them coming back. Before long, a pool room will build up a set of "regulars," much like a neighborhood gathering place.

One more thing, cleanliness and getting rid of odors is key. There is nothing worse than walking into a pool room and having it smell like urine, vomit, and body odor. In fact, I have been to some pool rooms where I was not comfortable using the rest room. They might as well have taken out the toilet and put a tree in there. The smell of it all too! :eek:

Location, advertisements, pool events for players of all caliber, cleanliness, good food and non-alcoholic beverage options are just some things I can think of that will help keep a pool room afloat.

In D.C. area, though, I think I'd rather open up a Starbucks joint than a pool room. It's just too costly.

Build it and they will come. It is possible to have a successful pool room, but one must have business sense, maybe buy their own land, and do some of the things I suggested above. JMHO, FWIW! :)

I think the best pool room I have ever read about is this one -- http://www.parlorbilliards.com/photo.html -- in Bellevue, Washington. I don't know how successful they are, but, man, that's my kind of pool room! :wink:
Is Buffalo Billiards in Dupont Circle still open? That place defines what a "happy hour giddy crowd" bar should be, complete with pool tables, and even a snooker table, at least when I went. Of course, the people that go there like to sit on the tables and chat, which the owners could care less about as they rake in the pool time, liquor and everything else.

But I was there three or four years ago, so I don't know what it's like now, if it is even open.

(Can't imagine some of the Jack & Jills crowd going to this place. It was like yuppie-central)

JAM
05-12-2009, 03:27 AM
I don't think so. I think his brother has a pool room inside Security Mall in Woodlawn, but that place is straight-up ghetto now, so they won't be seeing me.

His brother is a VERY GOOD friend of mine. I haven't seen him in a long time, but I may just go up there to visit him. I've been to some pretty "uncomfortable" pool room environments, I guess you could say. So, when I go, I will do it during the daytime hours. :wink:

Last time I saw his brother -- (we used to call him "Korean Lee") -- he told me he was playing GOLF! LOL. :D

Man, did he ever have some gamble in him in the old days. He had no fear and would play anybody! :)

One day in Rockville, MD, I was feeling spunky, just got back from a road trip with a player named Geese, and I was hitting 'em pretty sporty. :grin-square:

So I walked up to Korean Lee and said, "How much will you spot me? I'm ready to play you some." He looked at me and laughed. :sorry:

Well, that kind of pissed me off, as if he didn't take me seriously. So I pulled out my cash and said, "Come on, big guy. Give me a game, and I'll play you for whatever you want."

Korean Lee had this stupid smirk on his face which really fueled my fire. He said, "Step up. I'll give you the last 3 for $20 a game," to which I replied, "You got action." I screwed my two-piece Sneaky Pete together, determined to show him a thing or two. My game had improved, and I was going to beat him in front of everybody in the pool room. :angry:

Well, it was no contest. Korean Lee barbecued me 5 games in a row. I tried not to let him know how hurt I was, losing like that after I ran my mouth. I unscrewed my stick. He said, "Have you had enough? Are you sure you've had enough?" I said, "Yeah, I'm done." Then he threw my money back at me on the table and said, "I don't take money from ladies." I just wanted to let you get that gamble out of your system. Better me than somebody else." :eek:

I tried to give Korean Lee back the money, but he wouldn't take it. I never challenged him again, and I came away learning a lesson. Leave the gambling to the big dogs and know your place in the pool room. :o

Black-Balled
05-12-2009, 06:05 AM
I don't think so. I think his brother has a pool room inside Security Mall in Woodlawn, but that place is straight-up ghetto now, so they won't be seeing me.

That's what I was gonna say. Hard as hell to find and equipment of the lowest magnitude.

Too bad, USA was the place to go the first decade of its life. I won the most money in one time there, EVER... (well, for me anyway!).

beetle
05-12-2009, 06:42 AM
Who's been winning at Orange Ball? :)

There are usually around 16-20 tough players, many of whom have a legitimate chance to win.

I usually don't stick around 'til the end, but I believe Manny and Ryan win most often. The 5/3 short race format gives everyone a decent chance though.

Mike Davis isn't in the area anymore, so he doesn't have a strangle-hold on the tournament.

Black-Balled
05-12-2009, 06:45 AM
... "Korean Lee"...Man, did he ever have some gamble in him in the old days. ... :o

He used to come into Westmont pretty regularly. Beat me for a chunk giving me something big, like the 6&8 in 9b. He came back a few months later and got a dose for a bigger bit as I was on the improve.

I understand he is/ was a very good 3c player and I can recall that when he got BIH he would set the CB right next to the OB, playing a carom on a money ball. Worked surprisingly well for him...first time only.

JAM
05-12-2009, 06:47 AM
There are usually around 16-20 tough players, many of whom have a legitimate chance to win.

I usually don't stick around 'til the end, but I believe Manny and Ryan win most often. The 5/3 short race format gives everyone a decent chance though.

Mike Davis isn't in the area anymore, so he doesn't have a strangle-hold on the tournament.


I haven't seen Manny play yet -- I don't think. Ryan, on the other hand, will be fun to hang with, and you too, Steve! :)

That's a tough weekly tournament. Any one of those local players can get there. :wink:

mcdpool
05-12-2009, 06:46 PM
Forgot to quote the post, but yes Buffalo Billiards in Dupont is still open. I usually visit the happy hour upstairs at Front Page first since I know the bartenders there then head down.

alinco
05-12-2009, 07:24 PM
JAM,

The Tuesday night Laurel thing is now the Tuesday Big Daddy's thing. Steve Fleming still runs it. $20. Double elim race to 5 (or 4?) and to 3 on 1-loss side. They also have a Saturday 2:00 10 ball tourney.

Andy

JAM
05-13-2009, 01:30 AM
JAM,

The Tuesday night Laurel thing is now the Tuesday Big Daddy's thing. Steve Fleming still runs it. $20. Double elim race to 5 (or 4?) and to 3 on 1-loss side. They also have a Saturday 2:00 10 ball tourney.

Andy

Thanks, Andy. That's good info. :)

It is nice to have so many choices of mini tourneys during the week. We are fortunate in this area, and there is also excellence competition no matter where you go, to include you, Mr. Alinco! :wink:

Black-Balled
05-13-2009, 05:42 AM
Thanks, Andy. That's good info. :)

It is nice to have so many choices of mini tourneys during the week. We are fortunate in this area, and there is also excellence competition no matter where you go, to include you, Mr. Alinco! :wink:

JAM typing error. Documented in her file today.

JAM
05-13-2009, 05:47 AM
JAM typing error. Documented in her file today.

LOL! You're right! :thumbup:

Some words just spit off my fingers, and that's one of them. Another is "statute" instead of "statue" and "identify" instead of "identity" and "form" instead of "from." :o

inside_english
05-13-2009, 10:22 AM
JAM,

The Tuesday night Laurel thing is now the Tuesday Big Daddy's thing. Steve Fleming still runs it. $20. Double elim race to 5 (or 4?) and to 3 on 1-loss side. They also have a Saturday 2:00 10 ball tourney.

Andy
race to 5 on winners, 4 on losers, 9B in bottom two pockets on the break does not count.
don't play in this if you want to be home before midnight.

deadwhak
05-13-2009, 10:29 AM
I've been to Galaxy Billiards twice within the last year just to swing by. I really enjoyed the place. They have buttons on the tables that you can push to summon a waitress, which is cool. The food was excellent as well.

I walked in twice to find a pick-up game and matched-up with two of the nicest old guys in the world. Nice people there.

Dave

this place sort of sounds like the galaxy billiards that was here in san antonio tx but shut down about 10 yrs ago cuz the owner ran it bad and had ppl takin advantage of him..anyways they had red lights above the table where u would pull the chain and it would light up to signal waitress needed!!! it was a great place..ahhh memories...

Cory in DC
05-13-2009, 11:30 AM
Is Buffalo Billiards in Dupont Circle still open? That place defines what a "happy hour giddy crowd" bar should be, complete with pool tables, and even a snooker table, at least when I went. Of course, the people that go there like to sit on the tables and chat, which the owners could care less about as they rake in the pool time, liquor and everything else.

But I was there three or four years ago, so I don't know what it's like now, if it is even open.

(Can't imagine some of the Jack & Jills crowd going to this place. It was like yuppie-central)

Buffalo is still open. Same crowd, consistently terrible service, but a good location. Snooker has given way to shuffleboard, however.