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Local

Oh, happy day

Popular Deer Grove eatery to reopen

DEER GROVE – After nearly 11 months since a fire destroyed Arnie’s Happy Spot, its newest incarnation will open at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

Construction is wrapping up at The Happy Spot, 1667 Hoover Road, which sits just west of where the old building was in this southeast Whiteside County village of 50. 

The restaurant is a larger building colored in its familiar maroon and white, with more parking and an outdoor dining area. The ceilings are taller and the bar is larger. A vintage McCormick Farmall tractor sits at the front entrance.

Known for its chicken, the restaurant comes with a slight name change, returning to its original name from the 1930s before Arnie Johnson bought the business in 1967.

Johnson sold it to Larry and Ginny Whitebread in 1999; Rick and Angie Lance acquired it in April 2018.

“Construction went good,” Rick said. “We had a great crew. They worked in some of those real cold days. We are very excited to be open for business.”

Burgers and seafood also are part of an expanded menu.

The Happy Spot will be open from 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, and from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Interior and exterior pictures have been posted on The Happy Spot’s Facebook page, where construction updates continue to be posted; call 815-438-5282 for more information. 

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