The squeaky wheel gets the grease.
Or does it?
Ryan Roberts and town residents need to know.
It seems Roberts’ establishment, R&R Brewing, has caused quite a stir in certain parts of the community. One couple, Bill and Wendy Ford, appear to be the “noisiest” and expressed their concern before the town’s board of commissioners last week.
After listening to both sides, I understand and respect that music can be loud and distracting, especially if you’re trying to sleep.
The two parties have exchanged numerous emails and met face-to-face to find a compromise. When they met in late June, Roberts listened to their grievances and suggestions, and agreed to work towards a resolution.
Yet, the wheel continues to “squeak” — if you listen solely to the Fords.
However, another resident, Angie Boyette, stepped up to the Mount Olive podium in support of Roberts during a recent commissioners meeting. She talked about the good times she has experienced there with her adult son and her father, and how much they enjoy the family-friendly atmosphere.
R&R Brewing is open four days a week and closes at a reasonable hour. The lone business of its kind in Mount Olive is a stopping point for residents and visitors from surrounding communities to wind down in a relaxing atmosphere. Roberts has a trivia night, brings in live musicians, offers outdoor movies and schedules other activities.
He doesn’t charge admission.
Prior to opening R&R, he spoke with town officials and made a promise to have a positive impact on the town by increasing the standard of living, contributing to local fundraising efforts and charities and help stimulate the local economy.
Roberts has supported numerous town clubs and organizations, and serves on the town’s chamber of commerce board.
“…I also consider the fact that a wheel is typically a supporting tool used to carry a vehicle of sorts and help it move in the direction necessary, often forward in an effort of progress,” Roberts said about his brewery in a written statement to the board of commissioners.
“I think about Mount Olive and the university, Southern Bank, Hwy 55, Piggly Wiggly, and of course, Mt. Olive Pickle Company as wheels that help us as a town grow and move forward.”
R&R Brewing is another successful wheel.
Roberts presented a packet of documented information to the board. The packet included how he managed to cut corners financially to alleviate the rigors and pressures during the early stages of the pandemic, and his many conversations with the Fords.
For the greater part of 2020, he operated the bar at half capacity.
So, what’s the “rub?”
R&R Brewing is a productive business with a solid clientele that enjoys letting its hair down every now and then. Mayor Ken Talton said the business is a positive asset to the community.
Bands are loud.
So are movies.
My suggestion? Buy some earplugs.
Rudy Coggins is assistant editor of the Mount Olive Tribune. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.