Loading...
BYH to the one responding to my plea for beef ribs, saying I had to leave eastern NC or even 'cross the border' to get...

Hot Dish: Parkers opening new location on Arlington

011017Parkers-4
1 of 4

The new Parker's Barbecue on Arlington Boulevard.

011017Parkers-3
011017Parkers-2
011017Parkers-1
Loading…

Holly West

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Parker’s Barbecue Restaurant wants its customers to feel like they’re among family, not just for warm family dinners and fun holiday parties, but when things get tough, too.

Co-owner Billy Parker said one night, a group came into Parker’s at 8:20 p.m., just 10 minutes before closing. Despite irritation from some employees, including the high school student who had to wait on the group of almost a dozen people, Parker insisted the group be served. 

After talking to them, he discovered it was a church group that had just come from Vidant Medical Center, where one man’s wife had been airlifted after having a stroke in Morehead City. 

“They came to Parker’s Barbecue that night, all 10 or 12 of them, and the reason why they were there was because they were getting ready to go back to the hospital and they were trying to decide if they were going to take her off life support that night,” Parker said. “And they were doing it in our restaurant. They were making that decision in the restaurant at 8:30 at night.” 

Parker recounted the incident at a training meeting Tuesday at the new Parker’s location at 1801 E. Arlington Blvd. The location, which opens at 10 a.m. today, is the third Parker’s Barbecue location in Greenville. The first was opened on Memorial Drive in 1971 by Parker's father and grandfather. A Greenville Boulevard location followed in 1986.

The new location will have a drive-through and the same menu as the other two restaurants. It will also keep the same hours: 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. seven days a week. 

Throughout the years, Parker said one thing has remained the company’s focus — showing God’s love through serving others. 

“Does Parker’s want to be successful? Yes. Do we want to serve the best chicken and barbecue and sides in town? Absolutely,” he said. “But at the end of the day, it can’t be about how many chickens we sold on a football game day or how many pounds of barbecue go out on Mother’s Day. Because, at the end of our lives, and this is what my father and grandfather and uncle have always instilled in the family, all we have is the impact we’ve had on people.”

Parker has emphasized those values to his employees as part of the training process for the new location. He’s getting help from his management team, who have worked at Parker’s for years.

Assistant Manager Clarence Clemons has worked his way through the company since being hired to help unload and prepare hogs at the Memorial Drive location 4½ years ago. He said the family atmosphere has always been apparent to him.

“It’s a good company to work for because they see your work,” he said. “It’s not like a lot of these chains around here where you don’t see the owner. It’s a big family-oriented company.”

He said he was grateful to be asked to be the assistant manager for the new location, and he hopes to instill the enthusiasm he’s seen from the Parkers in his employees.

“You come in with a good attitude and it’s contagious,” he said. “If you get under a good manager or you get under a good assistant manager, you’re going to be better.” 

In addition to encouraging good attitudes, Parker’s provides support for employees and customers through a corporate chaplain. Chaplain Gerson Torres meets with anyone who needs him. 

“That’s the meat of it, just knowing an employee has the opportunity to speak with someone who’s not going to judge them, is going to be there for them in their time of need,” he said. “With family members, if there’s a sickness, if they’re having suicidal thoughts, if there’s depression, if there’s anxiety, if there’s stress, we talk through it.”

Parker’s extends Torres’ services to customers, too, something Torres said is rare among corporate chaplains. He contacts every person who submits a prayer request in the boxes at each restaurant and makes hospital visits. His photo hangs in the restaurants and employees can refer people to him if they need someone to talk to.

Since Parker and his wife, Callie, decided to hire Torres five years ago, Parker said Torres has led 80 employees, employees’ family members and customers to Christ.

Torres, who is contracted through Corporate Chaplains of America, has also provided counseling services to some customers, including a couple that submitted a prayer request in one of the boxes.

“They sat at table 13 at the Memorial Drive store and he did a marriage counseling session with her and her husband,” Parker said. “They did a marriage counseling session in the dining room at Parker’s Barbecue. How crazy is that?”

William Torres, manager of the Arlington Boulevard location, said the same standards by which Parker’s has always operated, in regards to both food and customer service, will be followed in the new location.

“Even though this is a new location, we’re going to do the same thing we do at number one and number two: treat everybody like family.” 

Contact Holly West at hwest@reflector.com or 252-329-9585. 

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Look

April 25, 2018

Q: My family recently celebrated our son’s birthday. We had a number of guests RSVP “yes” to our invitation who not only didn’t show, but also didn’t even have the decency to contact us to let us know. It’s been a week since the party.

This left us with far…

Carolyn Hax

April 25, 2018

The Leroy James Farmers Market vendor of the week is Bill Burke of Burke’s Nursery.

“At first I sold vegetables, but with so much competition it wasn’t easy,” Burke said. “My son, Joseph, suggested we sell vegetable plants, herbs and maybe flowers. This worked out…

042518vendor

April 25, 2018

First, a shout-out to the Brody medical students and all the contributors to the Marathon Food Drive. A total of 4,371 pounds of healthy foods was collected for our healthy food pantry. A special shout-out to members of the Family Medicine department who challenged each other and brought in 1,658.…

KathyKolasa

April 25, 2018

Whether you want to take the family for dinner, meet some friends for drinks, meet the guys for beers and a game or host an office party, Kickback Jack’s, 420 Red Banks Road, fits the bill. There is a combination of high-top tables, roomy booths, 50 HD TVs as well as several 90-inch TVs,…

042518hotdish

April 25, 2018

It’s easy to be greedy at this time of year when fresh spring produce clutters the farmers market tables. I can’t resist buying a rotation of asparagus, sweet peas and early strawberries, which pass through our kitchen to the dining table on a daily basis. You’d think that we…

LyndaBalslev

April 22, 2018

I’m stuck with a hoarder’s memory.

My brain — my attic, if you will — is entirely too full of random stuff. Entire passages of books I’ve read. Minor details of geography. Lyrics of Broadway show tunes. Odd bits of trivia with little apparent use or connectivity.

I…

Bob Garner

April 22, 2018

NARCISSUS DID NOT FARE WELL

Dear Short Answers: My girlfriend has become obsessed about the way she looks, and I think it might be the end of our relationship. Every day she asks me questions about her hair and her dress and her makeup, and honestly, I don’t know and I don’t care.…

Short Answers

April 20, 2018

The 14th Community Youth Arts Festival will bring 150 visual and performing artists to Greenville on Sunday, leaving some people to wonder how on earth they had never heard of this before.

The newly named festival is actually two celebrations in one. The event combines the ECU Youth Arts Festival…

052117TalentShow-1.jpg

April 20, 2018

“I Feel Pretty” suffers from a fatal flaw: its premise. Built around the notion that there’s something inherently hilarious — even crazy — about a woman not supermodel-thin or -gorgeous behaving with the confidence of one who is, the comedy treats its star, Amy Schumer,…

042018pretty

April 20, 2018

Capsules of movies playing locally. New releases are indicated with an asterisk.

BLOCKERS — Three parents try to stop their daughters from having sex on prom night. (1 hour, 42 minutes) Rated R.

BLUMHOUSE’S TRUTH OR DARE — A harmless game of Truth or Dare among friends…

042018traffik
338 stories in Look. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 34
        Next Page»   Last Page»