Cafeâ€™s remodeling is a family, community effort
Town and Country CafĂ© in Florence has been a staple for travelers and Marion County residents for generations. For the next few weeks, the cafĂ© will be getting a facelift and possible preparations for a new owner.
Carolyn Spencer and her husband, Edmond, have owned the cafĂ© for 18 years. This is their first complete remodel, right down to the wall sockets. The dining room was redone two years ago.
â€śWeâ€™re very excited,â€ť Spencer said. â€śWhen itâ€™s done it will be completely different, and you wonâ€™t recognize it.
She hopes to have the restaurant open by the middle of February, but it might be as late as the first or middle of March.
â€śI never liked how the front looked so I got my husband and daughter on the bandwagon. At first we were just going to paint it, but it snow balled from there.â€ť
The remodel will feature new walls, new tile floors both in the eating area and the kitchen, a new stove and refrigerator, and Spencerâ€™s favorite, counter stools based on a 1950s design.
â€śWeâ€™re going for an old-fashioned â€™50s and â€™60s look,â€ť she said. â€śI even ordered Coca-Cola lights. The bar stools are being custom made because you canâ€™t hardly find them anymore.â€ť
Two local contractors, Bruce Fetrow and Ken Hoffman, are doing the work.
â€śWeâ€™re trying to keep everything as local as possible,â€ť Spencer said. â€śPeople in the area have helped us be successful, so itâ€™s just the right thing to do.â€ť
The biggest change according to Spencer will be relocation of bathrooms, making them handicap accessible.
A new menu is being discussed by Spencerâ€™s daughter, Becky Harris, and son, Dallas Wells. It would feature different types of hamburgers and cheeseburgers alongside the restaurantâ€™s classic menu. Meal prices however will remain unchanged, Spencer said.
Spencer is encouraging Wells to take more of a leadership role in the remodeling. She hopes that he will take over the business so Spencer and her husband, both in their 70s, can retire.
â€śSince weâ€™ve owned it, itâ€™s always been a family operation, and weâ€™ve always helped each other,â€ť Spencer said. â€śGod has blessed us in more ways than one with this restaurant.â€ť
Community support has been tremendous, Spencer said.
â€śWeâ€™ve had more visitors to see what we were doing and bring us treats,â€ť she said. â€śThey always ask if thereâ€™s anything they can do to help.â€ť
In tune to â€śIâ€™m So Excitedâ€ť by the Pointer Sisters, Spencer said she could not wait to see the finished product and share it with her customers.