Grandy’s closing Gainesville location Thursday
Published: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 2:47 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 2:47 p.m.
Thursday will be the last day of business for Grandy's after 29 years in Gainesville.
Dave Miles, who owns the Gainesville Grandy's, said the long goodbye has been "pretty difficult" since he announced the restaurant's impending closure earlier this year to make way for a PDQ.
He told The Sun in March that he doesn't have the resources for remodeling needed at the aging restaurant.
Some employees already have left to find new jobs, but Miles said his management staff has remained.
"I've got a lot of long-term employees. They've hung by me and are planning on being here till the end," he said.
Miles said he is thinking about "testing free agency" and working for somebody else, and maybe opening a smaller-scale restaurant in the future that serves just breakfast and lunch.
The location is the last for Grandy's in Florida. The company has more than 50 locations in seven other states.
"I'd just like to thank Gainesville for 29 wonderful years," Miles said. "It's been an honor and a privilege to serve the people of Gainesville. I was able to raise my family here and really have some deep roots here in Gainesville."
PDQ, a Tampa-based fast-casual chicken chain, will start demolishing the location at 3401 W. University Ave. in early September before rebuilding for a possible January opening, spokesman Jeff Kamis said.
Mojo Q Holdings of Jacksonville plans to open an as-of-yet unnamed barbecue restaurant in downtown Gainesville following a major renovation at 12 SE 2nd Ave., longtime home of The Sovereign and, in recent years, Ti Amo, Blue Water Bay, Second Ave. Oyster House and lastly, the Cellar 12 catering event space.
Owner Todd Lineberry said the restaurant could open sometime between late October and the end of the year.
Mojo Q has five locations in the Jacksonville and St. Augustine areas.
Lineberry said the restaurants cook fresh meat with real wood — "no gas, no electricity" — in smokers they build themselves.
After opening 24 Florida restaurants in 20 years, former Gator football player Crawford Ker sold his WingHouse Bar & Grill to Third Lake Capital, which plans to expand the chain throughout the Southeast, according to a news release.
Ker, who also played in the NFL, will remain with WingHouse as CEO.
The Gainesville location opened in October 2012 at 3857 Archer Road.
Anthony Clark is the Gainesville Sun business editor.