Chamber sponsors Gathering Place ribbon cutting

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By Lou Elliott Jones

While some folks may talk gloom and doom, things are looking up in Cedar Key where the Chamber of Commerce recently sponsored a ribbon cutting for a new business, The Gathering Place at Cedar Key, a family-owned business at 434 Second Street. 

The Pearson Family – Josh and his parents Michelle and Tom – have opened next door to the Chamber of Commerce office and the Salty Needle quilt shoppe. 

The business' name came naturally, said Michelle Pearson, as the family ministers The Gathering which meets on Friday evenings in the City Park. 

“We wanted a family-based business and it's a place to gather,” said Tom Pearson. 

The cafe is open from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. seven days a week. One thing they want folks to know is this is not a seafood restaurant. Rather it is a home cooking place with meals like those you would serve at home to your family. 

Breakfast is served all day, with two-egg omelets that come with a variety of fillings like cheese, Western, ham and cheese, taco, pulled pork, Oinker (bacon) and veggie. They will also “customize” your omelet as they did for one customer putting mushrooms into a cheese omelet. There's the more traditional breakfasts of eggs, bacon, sausage and biscuits, with the specialty Clammers Breakfast of three eggs, 3 strips of bacon or link sausages or two patty sausages. All are served with a choice of grits or potatoes and a choice of toast or biscuit. For those who simply have to have yogurt for breakfast, it's on the menu too and available with fruit. There is also a variety of breakfast sandwiches. 

One interesting note here is that the menu has some gluten-free offerings in bread and pancakes, oatmeal, stuffed french toast and fruit crepes. While the bread is gluten free, Tom Pearson said they are still trying to source gluten-free buns for its burgers. 

Lunch consists of soups, salads and sandwiches – including a Black & Blue Burger, that is getting good reviews from customers. Sandwiches include grilled cheese, BLT, fish, pulled pork and beef, chicken or carnitas tacos. 

For meals there is spaghetti and chicken tenders with sides. 

As if to express the cafe's “meals you would serve your family” the permanent option for soup is beef vegetable. There will also be other soups served on a rotating basis. 

The Pearsons are planning to serve family-style Thanksgiving from noon to 2 p.m. on Nov. 28, but they are asking folks to make reservations by calling 352-543-9464.