By MATT LINDSEY
CANTON -- Nearly five months after closing due to the tragic death of its owner, The Meadows Restaurant reopened recently under the original owners who launched the business in 1994.
The previous owner, Richard F. Morrow, owned the restaurant for about a year and half before he was killed Dec. 23, 2013 by an impaired driver as he rode his bicycle home from work.
Owners Terri and Richard Nautel recall seeing Morrow around town on his bike all the time before ever meeting him. Richard, known to those who were close to him as Dick, was “one of those faces you always saw around often, but never knew who he was,” Mrs. Nautel said.
“We had put a sign up in front of the restaurant because my husband and I were looking to retire and soon thereafter in Dick walks…He said to me, I’ve always wanted to own a restaurant,” Nautel said.
The Nautel’s stayed aboard to help Morrow transition into his new role as owner of a restaurant.
“We spent over a month training him every aspect of owning a business, making sure he understood everything before we left,” Nautel said.
After Morrow’s death, the Nautel’s went through the proper legal channels to regain ownership of the restaurant.
“We weren’t really enjoying retirement. It just wasn't for us,” she said.
The business officially reopened on May 16 and slowly the word is getting around and things are getting back to normal at The Meadows Restaurant.
“Things have been going extremely well.” I think people are excited we are back,” she said.
They advertised on the marquee at the movie theater in Canton, but credit the positive response since reopening to word of mouth, according to Nautel.
“We want this to be a place where people come together, get plenty to eat and can enjoy a pleasant experience to chit-chat with everyone.”
The menu is all new and will change with the seasons. With warm weather upon us now, the eatery will offer a variety of homemade macaroni, potato and coleslaw salads. They will also offer a variety of soups including vegetable, split pea and turkey and rice.
“We try to buy as much local as we can,” she said.
The owners decided to bring back LA Cinnamon Bread, which was a staple of the restaurant since it opened, according to Nautel. The bread is grilled with a maple glaze and is about one inch thick and eight inches long.
“Without a bakery in Canton, people associate the bread with us and are happy its back,” she said.
All prices on the menu have been lowered because the owners say they are working with a new food vendor.
“We want to welcome the community and thank them for their support,” Nautel said.
The Meadows serves breakfast and lunch from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. seven days a week and are located at 5835 County Route 27.
“We are here every day chipping in wherever we can to help out,” Nautel said. “This is our baby.”