After the loss of K&B Hayloft, Beaver Amacher stepped in to rescue the renowned spot on the corner of Division Street and CTH X in Withee. With the tragic passing of Beaver, his family sold the bar to Reina Ibarra for a short-lived opening of the bar and grill. Now, Jason and Samantha (Sam) Thornton have purchased the site.
In a much-anticipated move, the Thorntons will open the bar and grill under the name IGYS Bar & Grill. In case you are wondering, IGYS is the acronym from military jargon meaning “I’ve Got Your Six.” In other words, “I’ve got your back.”
The meaning is important to not only military personnel but law enforcement and first responders. Jason is the fire chief of the Owen-Withee-Curtiss Fire District and Emergency Medical Services. Sam was the manager at the Mega Coop Shell Station and Convenience Store in Colby. She resigned that position to devote her time and attention to IGYS.
Asked when they expected to open, Jason has stated, “We want to open by Labor Day.”
Sam clarified, “We are hoping to be ready. In fact, we are planning a soft opening for Friday (September 4, 2020). Probably not-so-soft,” she said.
The only thing that they are waiting for is the vendors to get them supplied. Sam said, “We’ve got the inspections done. We just need the goods.”
They will open with a drinks-only offering. The food will have to wait until licenses are received from the state. When they are ready, Sam assured, “We will have the pizza and burgers menu but we will look to expand on the menu, eventually offering a Friday Night Fish Fry.”
No new purchases were necessary for any equipment or furnishing. “The only thing we are working on is the decorations,” Sam explained. “The decorations are going to be focused on a military-police-fire department theme.”
Sam’s father, Marine sniper Bruce Johnson, is the source for many of IGYS’ decorations. His duffel bag, marked with the islands, ships, and bases he visited during his tours, and photographs and other memorabilia will grace the venue. In addition, Fire and Police items will be included. Bruce Johnson also served as a police officer for the City of Owen “for many, many years,” Sam related.
Many people saw the fire crews on hand at the location last week, as they cut down a large tree on the property facing Division Street. That led many people to speculate about the use of the cleared space.
“It’s just that the tree was rotted all the way to the ground,” said Sam. “Plus, we removed the horseshoe pit, so we can add an outdoor patio later.”
The hours of operation will be Tuesday through Sunday from 11 a.m.-close.
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