Corner Pub to open under new management, new name

Monday, February 11, 2002


He considered Margie's. Then he thought about Mack's. At one point, he even thought about calling it Dirty Drummers.

Those were some of the names Alfred McCain had been chewing over since he took over the bar on Frederick Street that had been known as the Corner Pub.

In the end, simplicity won out.

"I'm going to call it Al's Place," McCain said. "It just sounded better to me."

Sounds good to us, too. Who wants to have a cold one ina place named for poorly bathed percussionists?

The Corner Pub closed in December, when the previous owner shut the doors for reasons unexplained.

McCain -- "just like Senator John" -- hopes to have the taps flowing freely at Cape Girardeau's oldest bar by March 1. It will be managed by Margaret Noel, previously of Brothers Lounge and the Vikings Club in Scott City.

"I heard the bar was closed and contacted John Boos about opening it up," McCain said.

Boos owns the three-story building at 1 S. Frederick and lives above the bar with his family.

The bar has been deemed safe by the fire department and McCain is awaiting his liquor license from the Cape Girardeau City Council. McCain, 50, is a heavy equipment operator for various contractors.

McCain has been busy cleaning up the place and has added a fresh coat of paint. He plans for the bar to have a different feel to it, though he thinks it will be one that customers will like better.

"I want it to have a nicer attitude, and to be kept clean," he said. "It's going to be a nice, laid-back atmosphere. People can relax, not worry about any problems and shoot the breeze. Once you come in and see the atmosphere, I think you'll be sold on the place."


Full-service sandwich

The Dwight's Plaza Amoco Station at 2148 William is, in business lingo, diversifying its product.

In regular speak, which is easier to understand and more fun anyway, the convenience store -- owned by Dwight Gates -- is adding a Quizno's Subs restaurant. Gates hopes to open the Quizno's sandwich shop by March 1.

"We're going to be one-stop shopping by the time it's done," said Debbie Baltzell, who works at Dwight's. (Gates was unavailable.)

The Quizno's is going to occupy the space vacated by the service department. It will offer the franchise's signature oven-baked subs, which are warmed through a conveyor toaster oven.

Gates researched the Quizno's chain, which was born in the kitchen of a popular Denver Italian sit-down restaurant called Footers, and decided it would fit in perfectly with his new concept.

A total of 92 new Quizno's Subs restaurants opened in the second half of 2000, including four internationally, bringing the total number of operating throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico and in eight foreign countries to 1,241.

The Cape Girardeau Quizno's will also offer soups, salads, deserts and -- after a few weeks -- catering, Baltzell said.

Baltzell said that they've also replaced their car wash. It's just like that neat hands-free, brush-less drive-through one on South Kingshighway next to Patrick's Furniture.

Customers should find all the changes impressive.

"When it's done, we hope people will be able to get gas, buy a 12-pack of beer, get their car washed, pick up supper and go on home," Baltzell said. "People should like it."

Rinse and repeat

When it comes to hair, Nara Moore is colorblind.

"In most salons, white hair stylists do white hair and if you're a black hair stylist you do black hair," he said. "I do both."

Or, rather, he will.

On Friday, Nara Moore is opening Naray's House of Styles at 31-C N. Main, which Moore describes as a "multi-cultural" hair salon. It will be located next to the Wine Cellar and will offer a wide range of salon services, including cutting, relaxing, perms, etc.

Moore's first name is pronounced Naray, and that's why he's adding the "y" to his business's name.

Moore is a 1999 graduate of Charleston High School who started beauty school at Ser's Beauty College there but finished at Stage One in 2001 with his cosmetology instructor's license.

"Everybody wants to be their own boss," he said. "This was my opportunity and it seems like the right time."

Answer for everything

Answer Right, a new 24-hour live operator answering service and nationwide Internet service, is going online today. East Prairie resident Brad Keck, a real Renaissance man who owns several businesses in the surrounding areas, is the owner.

The business, at 519 Broadway, has its clients' calls forwarded to it and then lets them know they have been contacted.

"It's for when people need to get their calls," he said. "After hours, weekends, at lunch. We answer it in their business name and then either page it out to them, or e-mail or fax it to them."

The business, which also offers Internet service, opens today and will employ eight people.

Keck has more businesses than my wife has shoes. He owns a similar service in Poplar Bluff, he has two insurance agencies in East Prairie and Malden, he owns his own data entry company as well as another Internet company called Bancclub in East Prairie.

So you know it was only a matter of time until he rolled his tanks into Cape Girardeau.

"It's an area that's growing, it's got many businesses here," he said.

Who knows how many more there will be before Mr. Keck is finished.

I Heart You

Just in time for Valentine's Day. U.S. Art Express has opened in the building that at 1027 Broadway that used to be Burritoville. Owner Jamie Compas, a Cape Girardeau resident who has been in printing since 1977, has a ribbon cutting and grand opening planned for late March.

The store sells personalized items, such as T-shirts, license plates, napkin holders or tote bags that can have pictures put on them or a special saying.

"You could bring a picture to me, I would scan it in and print it out and put it on a T-shirt or whatever," Compas said, adding that she offers a guarantee that the picture or words won't come out or immediately fade.

Compas said it's a one-of-a-kind for the area and that other places have to send similar work off to be done. Compas said that business has started off pretty slow, but she hopes it picks up.


  • First Discount Travel has been located at the mall for five years, but now it is moving to a strip mall at 3441-A William. That's the strip mall that is also occupied by Payless and Heavenly Ham. The full-service travel agency is moving later this week.

  • Coldwell Banker Abernathy Realty in Jackson has had its plan for a new 6,000-square-foot building approved. The new office will be at 2737 E. Jackson Blvd. Construction plans are indefinite.

    Scott Moyers is business editor for the Southeast Missourian. Send your comments, business news, information or questions to Biz Buzz, 301 Broadway, Cape Girardeau, Mo., 63702-0699, e-mail to or call 335-6611, extension 137.

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