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Toy Box Gentleman’s Club torn down to make room for new growth

Published: May. 11, 2022 at 3:41 PM CDT
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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The Toy Box Gentleman’s Club in Panama City is almost unrecognizable after the demolition started Wednesday morning.

The club closed its doors back in December, but it was hard to miss if you’ve ever driven across the Hathaway Bridge.

“When people drive across the bridge, this is one of the first buildings they see. No longer,” Panama City Commissioner Josh Street said. “Seeing this particular establishment go will be something that is definitely meant to a lot. Future generations will not have to explain why we don’t Christmas shop at the Toy Box.”

It seems neighboring businesses are just as excited to see it go.

“It being right across the street from us, we want it as much, as if not more, than anybody,” Rich Johnson, the Manager at Papa Joe’s Bayside, said.

“This is a joyous occasion because we have been waiting for this,” Debbie Ashbrook, the CEO of the Central Panhandle Association of REALTORS, said.

But it isn’t because the club ever caused them issues.

“We didn’t see a significant problem because our office is typically closed when this is open,” Ashbrook said. “Our biggest thing is people always say I’m turning by the Toy Box when they come across the bridge.”

Now it’s stripping away the old and in with the new.

“We’ve had so many great investments that have taken place on 98 and we just want to give attention to what’s happening here and what’s going to happen in the future,” Street said.

Myers Electric is planning to build a three-story multi-use commercial building in its place.

“We’re real excited. We love it. It’s just showing growth,” Johnson said. “It’s showing you know we want this town clean and this is a huge step.”

There is no timeline as to when new construction will start, but officials said they hope to get things started before the end of the year.

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