Popular downtown restaurant leaving because ‘landlord wants more money’

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JONESBORO, Ark. – Calli Perkins’ favorite place to eat in Jonesboro will soon close and the reason the restaurant gave left a bad taste in her mouth.

The ownership of The Parsonage 322 revealed sad news for their patrons and diners Wednesday morning: they’re being forced to move out in 30 days by the landlord because someone is willing to pay more money for the location.

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“On Saturday we received a text from our Landlord, Kent Arnold, that he has a restaurant that is willing to pay more rent than us and has given us 30 days to vacate,” The Parsonage’s page admin wrote. “We understand completely that that is his right and that this is business. So with that being said, we are closing our doors, 322 S. Main, with such sadness.”

Being a downtown regular, Perkins was very let down by the news.

With over 350 reviews on Facebook, The Parsonage is highly rated at 4.8 stars. Perkins shares that sentiment. She first visited last year and has been a fan since, she told NEA Report. She said the owners and staff were accommodating but she also loved the atmosphere.

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“The first time I ate there was last summer when I walked from my downtown office,” Perkins said. “I loved that they had jazz music playing and the daily lunch specials kept me coming back.”

Ramey Myers co-owns The Parsonage with her husband, Chef John. She said spoke to NEA Report said said prior to Saturday, they had absolutely no idea they would soon be kicked out.

“This has been a complete shock,” Ramey said. “We are both devastated and so sadden by all of this. Our hearts are truly broken.”

With a month notice, they now must recover from the emotions while scrambling to secure their future. The social media post from The Parsonage said the restaurant will hopefully land on its feet. They indicated a possible future location would be coming. Their hope is that regular diners will follow them wherever they may go but depending on how far that is, as Perkins said, it could mean less traffic even from the restaurant’s biggest fans.

“I would likely continue to go, although maybe not as often,” Perkins said.

NEA Report reached out to Kent Arnold for comment. He read the message but we didn’t receive a reply as of publication.

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4 Comments

  1. unfortunately it is what it is. Kent Arnold, to everyone’s apparent surprise is a businessman…one that also has to pay bills and make an income. I remember when downtown was a sh$thole, properties were basically falling down, needing to be condemned. A few folks stepped in and re-built it. Are they now at fault for doing that? Amazing. Sounds like a lot of left-wing, anti-business folks that are complaining.

  2. From Sunday’s Jonesboro sun : The couple first rented the Main Street building, signing a lease with the option to buy it. Arnold bought the building about a year and a half ago, and the Myers did not renew the existing lease when it ran out.

    “We knew it was risky doing that,” Ramey Myers said. “But we just weren’t ready to do that.”….

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