Shooters Cafe opens in 117-year-old building
PARKERSBURG – A 117-year-old building on Fifth Street in downtown Parkersburg is home to a new business which hopes to restore the building to full use and create an attraction bringing people to the downtown area.
Jason Pyatt is manager of Shooters Cafe, a bar and grill which opened several months ago in the former Odd Fellows building at 316 Fifth St.
Shooters opened its doors on Halloween and received its license to serve beer in January. It is owned by Wendell McMillan of Vienna, Pyatt said.
“It’s come a long way since then and it has continued to go in a positive direction,” he said of the business since its opening.
“We came in here with the intent to bring in a clean, comfortable environment for people to come in and play pool and play darts,” Pyatt said.
Shooters also offers a variety of food, especially subs.
From 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on weekdays, the business offers free delivery to any location within 10 minutes of the downtown area. Pyatt said people familiar with downtown Parkersburg in the past might remember the subs, which were created by Butch Bova, former owner of Butch’s Break and Run Cafe at the same Fifth Street location as Shooters.
Pyatt said he was a former regular at Butch’s where he liked to play pool and became a friend of Bova, as did many others.
“I was fortunate enough to have him come in and show us his secret and we are continuing his subs today. That’s our mainstay,” he said.
Two of the main attractions at Shooters will be pool and darts. Pyatt said several tables are available on the main floor and the cafe is in the process of renovating and restoring the second floor of the building, where eight more pool tables will be placed in the near future.
That second floor space will also be available for banquets, receptions and larger groups, because special covers for the pool tables will convert them into tables and seating for up to 80 people, he said.
Shooters has a variety of dart boards, including state-of-the-art electronic boards that allow players to compete against each other physically or electronically in real-time with people in other locations locally, statewide, around the country and even around the world, Pyatt said.
Shooters will be organizing or hosting leagues and tournaments in both activities and will continue looking at ways to bring people to the business, he said.
While Shooters is primarily a bar and grill, Pyatt also wants to offer activities for families and young people, including possibly pool and dart tournaments for teens in the future, scheduled for the third weekend of each month.
“That’s going to bring in some younger pool players,” he said.
Pyatt believes the Mid-Ohio Valley has a deep pool of pool players and enthusiasts, especially those who grew up when there were more youth opportunities in the area. He wants to provide a venue for them and to get new people involved.
Since Shooters Cafe opened- and for some time before – Pyatt said he has been interested in the Odd Fellows building and its story. He has been working with a local historian to collect information about the history of the building and the organization, a longtime benevolent and altruistic fraternal organization known for doing good works.
“(The year) 1897 is the date that’s on the building and I don’t know much more about the building than that. I know the infrastructure is in fantastic condition, considering the age,” he said.
Shooters Cafe will be open 11 a.m.- midnight seven days a week and can be reached at 304-834-3950. In addition to food, beer, darts and pool, Pyatt said other activities are planned in the future, from live music to other attractions. Information about the menu and activities will be posted on Facebook.
“As long as we have people here, we’re open and as long as we’re open we’re serving food,” he said.