Colts history on block again with Club 4100 auction

Daily Record Business Writer
May 26, 2009 8:07 PM

On Friday, the future of an aging Baltimore sports institution gets left up to fate — or, more accurately, the highest bidder.

Owners Meenawatie (left) and Rajcoomar Harkie with just some of the memorabilia at Club 4100 in Brooklyn. The old Colts hangout will be sold at auction Friday.Club 4100 dates to 1958 when its original owner George Coutros, Colts quarterback Johnny Unitas’ godfather, opened a bar underneath a house he bought in Brooklyn. Up until the Colts left Baltimore in 1984, the club served as a pre- and post-game hangout for fans and players, and the establishment’s walls are littered with photographs and signed memorabilia to prove it.

Its current owners, Rajcoomar and Meenawatie Harkie, who bought it in November 2007 for $950,000 from Manny and Dino Spanomanolis, don’t want to sell to just anybody. But that’s what they’ll face this Friday at the landmark’s auction.

“If they can treasure it and continue the club the way it’s been here for the last 50 to 60 years, that’s what I would hope for the new owners,” said Rajcoomar Harkie. “That’s what we’ve tried to do.”

The long road to uncertainty

Daily Record Business Writer
May 14, 2009 6:57 PM

On a typical Saturday at Pimlico Race Course, longtime Maryland horse racing reporter Dale Austin could walk into the racetrack’s press box and find it flooded with at least 25 or 30 reporters.

“Pimlico was a red-hot place, the hottest in the East,” said Austin, who covered racing for The Baltimore Sun for 29 years. “You could go up to a window in Washington to get a ticket the day of a Redskins game, and, except for Opening Day, you couldn’t fill up the ballpark for baseball games. But there’d be 20,000 people at the racetrack in Maryland.”

But that was in 1962.

And since that time, perhaps the only thing that the horse racing industry nationwide and in Maryland has done is consistently miss the boat, falling further into obscurity and an uncertain future.