Fire Damages Popular Ava Restaurant; New Owners Wil Reopen

 Fire Damages Popular Ava Restaurant; New Owners Wil Reopen

A fire rips through a family-owned restaurant in the town of Ava, Mo., leaving the Ozarks one less of tasty, home-cooked meals, just a week after the new owners took over the place.

Dustin and Katie Isaacs bought Archie’s Family Restaurant on March 25 after dreaming for years of owning and working a restaurant of their own. The couple said it was close to their home, which would allow them to include the family and work together to run.

In that first week of owning the restaurant, Katie said she saw its loyal customer base for herself. She said people would come in and sit at tables to drink their coffee for hours.

Archie’s wasn’t just a place to come eat and hang out; it also served its community.

According to Dustin, the restaurant would have a Friday night special and benefit nights – where people would wait in the parking lot to get in.

Katie said she received a call on April 1, telling her the restaurant was on fire. At first, she thought it was a prank, being April Fool’s Day. However, the couple drove out to the restaurant to find it on fire.

She said smoke could be seen from every crack in the building.

Ava firefighters were able to save the building itself without knocking any holes into it. According to the State Fire Marshall’s Office, the fire began in the kitchen’s light fixtures area.

The restaurant had 11 employees; one of which has already been hired at another town restaurant.

Dustin and Katie begin the cleanup process, but the community is there to support them. The couple said many people in the community have asked how they can help the couple rebuild.

And, rebuild and reopen, they shall. The couple said they want to do that as quickly as they can.

Dustin said people are anxious to see what the restaurant will look like now. He anticipates Archie’s will be even busier after it reopens.