FALL RIVER: Residents in Fall River have been clamouring for some time for a restaurant/pub for their community. Now, with The Turtleback Tap & Grill scheduled to officially open on March 2, they have it.

To let people from around the community—located in the building which will also be the new home for Fall River Dental Group on Highway 2 across from Burgess Service Centre/Race Trac Gas—get a feel for what they offer, owners Darren Scott and Jaro Schubert held a soft-opening on the weekend of Feb. 25-26. Reporter Pat Healey was invited to the Feb. 26 event.

The Turtleback Tap & Grill, located across from Race Trac Gas on Hwy. 2 in Fall River, was a popular spot during it’s soft opening event on Feb. 25-26. They’re ready to open to the general public on March 2. (Healey photo)

“It’s big for both of us. We’ve both wanted this for a long time. I think we got it in a great spot in a great community, so we’re happy to do it here.”

Scott was confident they likely could have filled the 30-40 seat restaurant/pub a second time Sunday even on short notice.

“There’s a lot of people who were interested to come and support us,” he said. “We had a lot of the people involved in the build, like general contractors and stuff, everybody that played a part. We wanted them to be here.

“There was no problem getting the place full. That was easy.”

The Turtleback Tap & Grill, which will employ 20 people, will have hours of 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Friday, with a weekend schedule opening for brunch on Saturday and Sundays at 10:30 a.m. They will be posting their menu and hours on their website www.theturtleback.ca and Facebook page “The Turtleback Tap & Grill.”

On March 2, popular singer Jon Cyr of Lower Sackville will officially open the Turtleback Tap & Grill with a performance beginning at 7 p.m.

Canadian Olympic Gymnast Ellie Black was among those who were invited to the Turtleback Tap & Grill during the soft opening on Feb. 26. Black poses with owners of Fall River’s newest business Darren Scott (left) and Jaro Schubert. The view from the patio in the back of the pub restaurant is great looking out at Lake Thomas; in the summer one can only imagine how picturesque it will be. (Healey photo)

Among those there on Feb. 26 in the full dining area being served a free supper, were Canadian Olympic Gymnast Ellie Black; and former NDP MP Peter Stoffer and his family from Fall River.

For me being there, I found that the Turtleback Tap & Grill is similar to something you would only see in Downtown Halifax, not Fall River. The meal I had, my favourite at most restaurants, fish and chips was really good.

Scott said they’re optimistic the community will come out and support them and all that they have to offer.

More people at their tables during soft opening on Feb. 26 at the Turtleback Tap & Grill in Fall River. (Healey photo)

“Our hope really is to be that community spot where you’re comfortable coming at lunch with a dirty pair of jeans on and having a burger,” he said. “A comfortable, yet high-service level, high-food quality place.

“I think that’s what people around here want.

He said they’re confident people will enjoy what The Turtleback Tap & Grill has to offer.

“Hopefully, we can be part of the community for a long time,” said Scott.

In order to do that, come March 2 it’s up to the Fall River community to do their part to ensure that happens.