Bills Backers Bar In Houston Hopes To Reopen
NORTH HOUSTON, TX — Still recovering from Hurricane Harvey, is a Buffalo Bills backers bar in North Houston that was badly damaged in six feet of water.
Channel 2’s Jeff Preval recently traveled to Houston and got an update on the progress that’s being made at Rack’s Bar and Grill.
During Hurricane Harvey, an SUV could be found partially submerged, outside Racks, and the wind sent tables and chairs into nearby trees. Inside the business, equipment and furniture was damaged.
“It was pretty bad, it pretty much took all the contents that were inside of Racks and lifted everything that would float was floating around moving around in here,” said Ray Jones, a Lockport native, who moved to Texas in the 90s and now owns Racks.
The restaurant a few years ago, became a little bit of Western New York in the Lone Star state.
“At that point and time I took over the menu and put a couple of local items like a beef on weck, wings and Sahlen’s hot dogs on the menu and before you knew it we were full of Buffalo people,” Jones said.
On Sundays, you would think you were in Buffalo.
“The fans are singing and chanting — it’s loud, it’s electric,” Jones said.
Two weeks after Harvey, cleanup continues. And, there are questions about whether the bar will reopen here.
“Right now we’re working with the insurance company trying to evaluate how much structural damage has been done to the building so we’re kind of in limbo right now,” Jones said.
He tells us most of what was damaged wasn’t insured and that the building was and the owner is deciding whether to rebuild.
“The problem is he owns all these buildings and some of them don’t have flood insurance,” Jones said.
But, there is no question Bills fans back home want to help the restaurant. 97 Rock set up a collection box at Dave and Adams in Williamsville, so fans could donate Bills merchandise that will be used to redecorate Racks, when it reopens.
REPORTER: How cool is that, that after all these years of you being in Texas, originally from Western New York, that because you guys support the Bills, they’re going to support you?
“It gets me choked up to hear all the support,” Jones said.
Jones says he is eyeing other locations in the Houston area to reopen at, if the one that he’s working to cleanup doesn’t work out.
And, with all this, Jones says he still plans on showing Sunday’s game at the restaurant. Jones tells us he’ll set up as many big screen TV’s as he can in back of the restaurant so Bills fans there, can watch the game with the rest of Bills Mafia.
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