CLEAR LAKE | The Barrel Drive-In is for sale.
Owner-operator Seth Thackery said the desire for a lifestyle change prompted him to put a for sale sign in front of the iconic Clear Lake Drive-In.
“It’s been a huge, huge part of my life and, I mean, I can’t remember a time when I haven’t worked there,” he said. “It wasn’t easy kind of letting go, but I kind of lost track why I initially bought the place.
“I bought the place to get ahead and start a family.”
Thackery bought the restaurant in 2008. Like his siblings, he started working there at 14.
The business, which started in 1958, has struggled in recent years.
Thackery rallied to try to save it, recruiting others to help.
In 2014, he won a $75,000 business makeover.
Volunteers helped renovate the drive-in for the 2015 season.
The goal of all that was to bring the restaurant back to its former glory.
Thackery hopes someone else will want pick up from where he left off, carrying on the restaurant’s nearly 60-year tradition of selling broasted chicken.
He doesn’t want the drive-in’s story to end with him.
“I’m just praying someone will see that, too, and pick it up and run with it,” he said.
He plans to operate the business this year until it is sold, although it might not open until after school lets out.