Communities court chain after crabby residents reject restaurant - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Communities court chain after crabby residents reject restaurant

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WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - After plans to bring a Joe's Crab Shack to Wrightsville Beach were rejected by town leaders, other communities are coming forward, hoping to court the chain.

Last night, Wrightsville Beach leaders refused to move forward with plans for the eatery to set up shop at Johnny Mercer's pier. 

Town leaders said parking would be too much of a problem.

John Hinnant, with Wilmington Downtown, Inc., tweeted to Joe's Crab Shack this afternoon, writing, "You guys should call me, get you a killer location in downtown w/ no parking requirement." He went on to tweet, "downtown Wilmington NC has a pop of 150K w/in 15 minute drive, $43K+ dips income = year round sales."

Hinnant told us the restaurant would be a good fit for the community, which has a mix of locally owned restaurants and a few chains.

"Don't worry about parking, make the city the best you can and people will find a way to get to you," he said. "This is one of those magnets - it's a customer attractOr, Joe's Crab Shack. I think would make a great addition to the market and I'd love to have them in downtown."

Downtown Wilmington isn't the only place expressing interest in Joe's. Carolina Beach Mayor Bob Lewis said they have commercial lots available on the water and Joe's would be a great addition.

"We'd welcome Joe's Crab Shack," Lewis said. "They have a great reputation. That sort of thing is great for economic development. I'd love to have them here in our town. We would work with them. It's great for the environment of our residents and also for tourism."

Hinnant wouldn't elaborate on WDI's efforts to entice Joe's. Mayor Lewis, though, said he is planning to reach out to the chain to talk to its leaders about all that Carolina Beach has to offer.

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