Lake Wylie Bagel Boat shop uses idea of political yard sign to help boost business


LAKE WYLIE, SC (FOX 46) — This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Tucked away on South Carolina Highway 49 in Lake Wylie is where you’ll find the Bagel Boat. Well, that is if you don’t drive by it first.

“I ask you, as you drive by, can you see the sign because of the trees? I think you’ll say ‘no, I miss it most time’,” Frank Keefe said.

That’s when owner Frank Keefe came up with what he thought was a great idea. Since politicians get free advertising with their yard signs, why not try it to help keep the Bagel Boat afloat? That’s when he began putting up signs advertising his specials.

“I’m a regular customer and I didn’t know even know he was doing salads. I’m like yay, he’s got salads. I didn’t know until I saw it on the board,” John Allen said.

Turns out, what sounds like great advertising to some, ended up breaking the law in York County, South Carolina.

The problem is the Lake Wylie overlay ordinance. This limits any temporary signs from being put in the area because the town is trying to keep Lake Wylie beautiful for those who live here and work here.

The ordinance is only in place from the Buster Boyd Bridge to Oakridge road and states any “commercial signs which display any advertising material other than the name and logo of the business are considered illegal.”

“If you drive down highway 49, you will see political signs, stores that are hiring people,” Keefe said.

All those types of signs are allowed. Political ads are deemed in the “public’s best interest” and are given the OK. Others argue those same signs just make the area look cluttered.

Keefe’s now working to come up with a solution. He told FOX 46 Charlotte he’s not at war with York County, he’s just a simple coffee shop owner trying to boost his business.

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