Friday, March 4, 2011

No more Fisherman Joe's? Say it isn't so

Say it isn’t so.

Fisherman Joe’s is closing its doors by May 1 because its lease is not being renewed by the landlord?


After years in the doldrums, Old Main Street seems to be on the cusp of revitalization and one of its mainstays isn’t going to be part of it?

There’s something wrong with that picture.

Fisherman Joe’s is Old Main Street.

That Bradenton city leaders are encouraged by the changes happening downtown is all well and good.

But at what cost?

Losing one of downtown’s landmarks is not what I call progress.

Nor is losing a good man who was loyal to that same vision, pouring everything he had into his restaurant to reach it.

Joe McDonald is Bradenton.

Earnest, friendly, hard working, a big-hearted restaurateur who always made you feel welcome.

It was one of my favorite stops.

We’d go into Fisherman Joe’s, sit at the bar, shoot the breeze with friends and watch a Rays’ game on TV.

Joe McDonald gave back, too.

Two weeks ago there was a big benefit bash up the street at The Lost Kangaroo for 2-year-old Jake Kerrigan, whose dad Bill has been incapacitated by a severe stroke.

McDonald cooked and donated food for the event.

On a Sunday.

His day off.

It appears McDonald will have a lot of time off beginning May 1.
Read more Sunday in Mannix About Manatee.

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