A Brief History of the Bellaire Club
The old AA adage that states all you need for a new meeting is a resentment and a coffee pot certainly applies to the Bellaire Club.
The club grew out of the Triangle Group that met in the old Houston-Western Club then housed on the second floor of the Triangle Building, which still stands. The club lost its lease because the steady parade of alcoholics, many of them “still suffering” was something other tenants would not tolerate.
When the Houston-Western Club moved, the Triangle Group voted to stay behind and rent church space. The reason offered was that the move would take them further from the VA Hospital which then had a large alcoholic treatment program. The Triangle Group took on a Wednesday night meeting there as well as provided transportation for patients to outside meetings.
The Triangle Group met in a church while plans for forming a new club were made. Finally, on Saturday, April 18, 1981 the first meeting was held in the new, one-room Bellaire Club on Cedar Street. This would become the old, old, old Bellaire Club to old timers.
The Thursday night Triangle Group meeting was the centerpiece meeting of the club. Always packed, the subject was always the first three steps. Many a newcomer’s first active service work was picking up patients at the VA hospital to bring to the meeting. Many of them stayed on to become vital members of the club. This outreach to newcomers characterized most meetings at the club and soon it enjoyed the reputation as one of the best places to sober up. You were guaranteed a firm foundation in the basics.
The club soon outgrew its first location and moved around the corner to another place in the same building, “across from Bert Wheeler’s!” From the front door, besides the liquor store one would see a hospital and a funeral home. An ever present reminder of our options.
When that location grew inadequate, the club moved across the street next door to the old Pancho’s on Bissonette.
The final move to its present location on Dunlap provided the most space the club has ever known
The Bellaire Club has suffered setbacks as well as triumphs. Come by and see what is going on. If you like what you see, you are welcome to stay.