MORRISTOWN - The potential return of Cattlemans Restaurant to the village was applauded at a well-attended public meeting Thursday night, where community members gave input on how they hope to see the restaurant operated.
Michael J. Kinney, one-time manager of the restaurant and current Syracuse resident, is hoping to buy the building from owner Mahlon T. Clements and open the restaurant again.
The restaurant was closed in the spring of this year, then under different management due to complications with the state Liquor Authority.
Mr. Kinney has said the building, with its million-dollar view of the St. Lawrence River, is an ideal place for a restaurant and he hopes to return to the region and kick-start the abandoned business.
Morristown Chamber of Commerce President Nathan Barker said Thursdays public meeting, held at the fire hall, was very positive.
Mr. Barker said more than 30 people attended to discuss their hopes for the restaurant.
I was pleasantly surprised at how many people arrived, Mr. Barker said. It went for more than an hour. It was very helpful.
Mr. Kinney wasnt able to make the meeting due to unforeseen circumstances, Mr. Barker said. Mr. Kinney could not be reached for comment Friday.
Mr. Barker said despite Mr. Kinneys absence, those in attendance were happy to see him express an interest in starting the business again.
Mr. Kinney ran the restaurant in 2003 and 2004.
Some of the recommendations from community members at the meeting include changing the name and ensuring the menu doesnt become ostentatious.
Mr. Barker said people want common food served in a welcoming atmosphere.
Among the ideas floated at Thursdays meeting was changing the restaurant into an Irish pub, Mr. Barker said.
Pretty much everyone just said, look the community is behind you, do it right, Mr. Barker said.
Mr. Barker said Mr. Kinney is considering re-opening the restaurant as soon as mid-January.