From Sonny's to Six Pence
Where ham biscuits once ruled, shepherd's pie will soon take the throne.
The Blowing Rock Town Council last week voted unanimously to allow Ron Anderson, owner of the Six Pence Pub and the adjoining building on Main Street in Blowing Rock, to demolish the old cinderblock building that housed Sonny's Grill for more than half a century.
Sonny's Grill served its last ham biscuit and livermush sandwich two years ago this March.
Now that Anderson has approval in the form of a conditional use permit (CUP) to demolish the building - known by locals as the Imerson building - the actual deconstruction process will begin in the next few weeks.
Anderson plans to raze the building and construct an outdoor seating area that will be part of Six Pence Pub. The outdoor patio will feature seating for 32 with two entrances from the current Six Pence building and one from Main Street. The dining area will be blocked off from view from Main Street sidewalks, but patio diners will have more of an open view of the neighborhoods behind the building.
Commissioners asked that potted plants or other items be available at the back end of the patio as a buffer between the dining area and the surrounding properties.
The base of the new patio will be built with red bricks to match the outside of the existing Six Pence Pub building.
During the council meeting, it was announced that Anderson has plans to donate a couple of red-vinyl covered bar stools and the screen door from Sonny's Grill to the Blowing Rock Art & History Museum (BRAHM) for a display. BRAHM is tentatively scheduled to open its new museum in Blowing Rock in October 2011.
The town's parking requirements of five spaces remains the same from the time the building was used as Sonny's Grill. According to contractor Ruben Morris, most of the demolition will take place from the rear of the building, and the town has placed requirements on the work in regards to noise, work hours, pedestrian safety, dust and other factors.
Sonny's Grill was opened by Sonny Klutz in the early 1950s and served as a focal point for both locals and tourists for over half a century. Its menu included breakfast dishes, hamburgers and fish sandwiches. Its signature dishes of ham biscuits and livermush sandwiches made it famous throughout the Southeast.
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