Re­main­ing hope­ful for Stone Jug

Mayor, deputy mayor op­ti­mistic restau­rant will open in 2015

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY MELISSA JENK­INS

Car­bon­ear Deputy Mayor Frank Butt de­scribed walk­ing through the Stone Jug on Wa­ter Street as a trip back in time.

He com­mented on the an­tique chan­de­liers, cop­per ceil­ings, wooden stair­cases and of course the stone walls that take you back to a time be­fore mod­ern lux­u­ries.

“It’s like some­thing you’d see in Europe,” Butt said.

An ar­ti­cle in The Compass last week de­scribed how the prop­erty’s owner, Amer­i­can busi­ness­man Bruce Branan, hopes to over­come is­sues that have so far pre­vented the restau­rant from open­ing. He has in­vested a sub­stan­tial amount of money in re­cent years to fix up the his­toric build­ing, which was built in the 1860s.

“I’ve been talk­ing to Bruce for a num­ber of years now and this is the sum­mer he would like to be open,” the deputy mayor said. “I think that’s still at­tain­able. I be­lieve he knows where he has to go. And I be­lieve he’s will­ing to go that route.”

Although Butt Jr. has some doubts about the build­ing be­ing ready this sum­mer, he still be­lieves it will open be­fore the end of 2015.

“It’d be great to open this sum­mer,” he said. “But it takes time to go through (gov­ern­ment).”

Some pa­per­work-re­lated is­sues have been pri­mar­ily the rea­son for the de­lay. Start of big­ger things The news comes on the coat­tails of a sale of a di­lap­i­dated build­ing that shares a wall with the Stone Jug. The new owner of the for­mer Easy Save build­ing on Wa­ter Street, lo­cal busi­ness­man Ge­orge Rowe, knows Branan and told The Compass he would be will­ing to work with the Stone Jug owner to make the prop­erty avail­able for use as an ad­ja­cent park­ing lot.

With the ad­di­tion of a new restau­rant to the down­town core of Car­bon­ear, both the mayor and deputy mayor feel it’s a step in the right di­rec­tion for the whole town.

Butt has chat­ted with busi­ness peo­ple who can’t wait to see the build­ing open, hop­ing it will at­tract vis­i­tors from places like St. John’s look­ing for a change of scenery for busi­ness meet­ings. This is just the be­gin­ning, he said.

“The town cer­tainly is re­vi­tal­iz­ing down­town,” Butt ex­plained. “Hav­ing that build­ing gone (Easy Save), hav­ing an in­vestor come in and turn­ing the (Stone Jug) into what he has. It’s the right way to go, and it’s cer­tainly the way the town would want it to go.”

Butt Jr. said this, along with the an­nounce­ment that a new break­wa­ter is on the way for the har­bour, will help with tourism, new de­vel­op­ments and busi­ness ac­tiv­ity in the town and es­pe­cially the down­town area.

“It’s go­ing to bring more peo­ple to Wa­ter Street,” Butt Jr. said. “It’s a win-win for us and him.”

PHOTO BY MELISSA JENK­INS/THE COMPASS

The fu­ture of the Stone Jug in Car­bon­ear re­mains some­what un­cer­tain, but the town’s mayor and deputy mayor both re­main hope­ful it will open as a restau­rant in 2015.

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