Big­foot’s to re­open in Ris­ing Sun on Sun­day

Fire de­stroyed restau­rant 14 months ago

Cecil Whig - - LOCAL - By JANE BELLMYER

jbellmyer@ce­cil­whig.com

— One of the most pop­u­lar restau­rants in town will re­open Sun­day, more than a year af­ter fire de­stroyed the West Main Street lo­ca­tion.

“It’ll be 14 months to the day we burned down,” said Mil­ton McAl­lis­ter, owner of Big­foot’s Steaks and Hoa­gies.

McAl­lis­ter said Thurs­day that as long as he passes the fi­nal in­spec­tion, he plans to have a soft open­ing Sun­day at 10 a.m.

An elec­tri­cal mal­func­tion caused the June 7, 2015, fire. McAl­lis­ter opted to raze the build­ing and start over. While the new build­ing only has an ad­di­tional 200 square-feet, he said it was built as a restau­rant. The for­mer build­ing was a con­verted house with a small kitchen and cramped seat­ing for 16.

“The kitchen was small and the din­ing room was smaller,” he said. “This is go­ing to be so much eas­ier.”

It will be eas­ier for cus­tomers as well, with seat­ing for 30, a larger park­ing lot

RIS­ING SUN

and a handicapped-ac­ces­si­ble en­trance and bath­rooms.

While wad­ing through all the con­struc­tion is­sues in Ris­ing Sun, McAl­lis­ter opened Big­foot’s Ex­press in Ox­ford, Pa., 10 months ago for a va­ri­ety of rea­sons, not the least of which was to make his pop­u­lar cheeses­teak subs avail­able and to keep his em­ploy­ees work­ing and paid. Most of his Ris­ing Sun em­ploy­ees will re­turn, he said.

McAl­lis­ter said it was heart­warm­ing to see all his Ris­ing Sun cus­tomers make the trip to Ox­ford to get their Big­foot fa­vorites.

“It takes a long time to build that cus­tomer re­la­tion­ship,” he said.

Some menu items won’t be avail­able right away, he warned.

“The pizza ovens haven’t come in yet,” he said, mean­ing there would be no pizza or strom­boli for about two weeks. “(Cus­tomers) have been wait­ing for 14 months. They can wait a lit­tle longer.”

“Every­body’s go­ing to want cheeses­teaks and hoa­gies,” he said, adding that the soft open­ing will give his em­ploy­ees time to get ac­quainted with the new kitchen equip­ment.

Over the past sev­eral days peo­ple have been drop­ping by to wel­come McAl­lis­ter back to town.

“They’re al­most as happy as we are,” he said. “It’s great to be back.”

His one re­gret was not hav­ing a win­dow built into the en­trance to give the Big­foot statue a per­ma­nent home.

“My wife sal­vaged him,” he said of the iconic fig­urine that was perched in the front win­dow of the for­mer restau­rant. “He got a bath and he’ll be here.”

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY JANE BELLMYER

The new Big­foot’s Steaks and Hoa­gies on West Main Street in Ris­ing Sun has more park­ing, more seat­ing and a handicapped ac­ces­si­ble en­trance and bath­rooms. Owner Mil­ton McAl­lis­ter plans to open Sun­day, 14 months af­ter the fire that de­stroyed the orig­i­nal restau­rant.

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