Popular Faunsdale Bar and Grill destroyed in Wednesday night storm

Faunsdale Bar And Grill 2
These photos of damage at the Faunsdale Bar and Grill in Marengo County. Photos provided by Suzanne McKee

Faunsdale, located in Marengo County, is a tiny town, even by Alabama standards. Despite its size, Faunsdale has something bigger cities often lack: A beloved community staple.

The Faunsdale Bar and Grill is home to many, many stories from residents near and far, from first dates to wedding receptions. This place holds major significance, and that’s why Wednesday’s storm damage is hitting the community so hard. No one was injured in Marengo County when the storm blew through, but the Faunsdale Bar and Grill was reduced to rubble.

Faunsdale resident Suzanne McKee said it’s an historic place and it’s where everybody gathers and celebrates events small and large.

“It’s special to our family,” McKee said. “My husband’s grandfather’s office was in this building years ago. My wedding reception was right here 18 years ago. If you ask someone where Faunsdale, Alabama, is they are going to say, ‘oh yeah, the Faunsadale Bar and Grill.’ ”

The restaurant was established in 1989. Owner Jennifer Cassity has been working there for 26 years, and she’s owned the place for the past seven.

“I feel numb,” Cassity said. “I haven’t had a second to really process because it’s been a whirlwind coming down here last night seeing what I could see and then being back this morning. The unbelievable amount of ‘what can I do?’ from family and friends has been amazing.”

Cassity said there’s no way this is the end of the Faunsdale Bar and Grill. In fact, she’s already planning on putting the restaurant back together, bigger and better than before.

“This is where everybody goes,” she said. “They all love this place. I love it. It’s a second home to me, being here as long as I have.”

After so many years, you get to know the community. And that community needs what Cassity’s restaurant offers.

“A lot of people go, ‘it’s just a restaurant,’ but I have Thursday night regulars, Friday night regulars, Saturday, Sunday,” she said. “They are here every week, and if they are not going to be here they send me a message saying ‘we are going to be out of town.’ That means a lot.”

Several years ago, the Faunsdale Foundation was established to help improve the town and preserve its historic locations like the Faunsdale Bar and Grill. Now, the foundation has its work cut out for it. Right now, all donations made to the Faunsdale Foundation will go toward rebuilding Faunsdale Bar and Grill.

“We would appreciate any support,” McKee said.