BBQ Restaurant Heads Blues Festival - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

08/29/04

BBQ Restaurant Heads Blues Festival

It's like any other festival. There's lots of food, drinks and entertainment. For the folks enjoying the day, it really is just another blues festival. But for the restaurant owners putting the event on, it's like a dream come true.

"I started working when I was 15 at the pier restaurant where Beau Rivage is now. Just kind of worked myself up," The Shed Owner Brad Orrison says. When the young Orrison graduated from Ole Miss, he teamed up with his sister Brooke and built The Shed restaurant in 2000. Though they were low on the funds, Orrison's college buddy Clint Elmore says they were high on their creativity. "The way it happened was, he had no money in the beginning. So he just found stuff for free and just pieced it together. Then we got a loan from Lowes and just built this tiny little shed," Elmore says.

When the BBQ shed finally opened, to save money, Owners Brad and Brooke worked as the wait staff. "I was doing all the plates, and she was taking the money and pouring the cold beer," Orrison adds. Three years have passed. The Orrisons say their dream restaurant has turned into a complete success. They have Live Blues Music every Saturday and even regulars they call "ShedHeads". One of Orrison's friends says putting on a large Blues festival like this one is something the family has wanted to do for long time.

Now that they've done it, he says it's just the beginning. "I think it's a step along the way. It never ceases to amaze me what he and his family can do when they put their heads together," Orrison's friend Eric Kelley says. As the Orrison's celebrate their success, Festival partakers celebrate the day of good BBQ, beer, and the blues. Jaimee Goad

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