A flip shot from Crabby’s to the Fairway
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By Jess Willard
The restaurant located at 18838 Route 4 in Carlinville is not unfamiliar to change. In 2012, it was renamed and redesigned from The Glades to Crabby’s Supper Club. On May 7, it received yet another makeover when previous owner Mike Crabtree turned the business over to Melody Harkey-Dufner.
Harkey-Dufner decided that she wanted to give the establishment a renovation that would allow for her to make it her own. Due to the proximity to the Carlinville Country Club, she thought the golf theme was worth going for and dubbed it The Fairway Dining and Spirits.
The Fairway will change from being open four nights a week to six. Tuesday through Sunday, the bar will open at 4 p.m., and the kitchen will run from 5-9 p.m. They can still be reached at (217) 854-4440 and post specials in addition to announcements on their Facebook page “The Fairway Dining & Spirits.” Harkey-Dufner intends on uploading their menu to the page in the future. Customer feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org as well, which Harkey-Dufner encourages as a way to help her and the staff improve.
Harkey-Dufner also aims to update the menu. “We’re trying to keep the best of Crabby’s,” she said. “Lighter and health-conscious options will eventually be offered, as well as possible gluten-free choices, but we’re still keeping a good chunk of familiar items.”
The Fairway became a dream turned reality for Harkey-Dufner due to her history in the restaurant setting: she started at 15. She mentioned her passion for the business and said, “I want to perpetuate the love of this tradition in my hometown.” Asked why Crabtree decided to do the transfer, she believed it was because of his other investments. “He bought The Glades and turned it around for the community. He was just ready to pass it on to someone who cares about maintaining that tradition,” she added.
Harkey-Dufner explained that becoming an owner has been challenging yet invigorating. She said, “It has involved a lot of preparation, but it’s exciting to see it all come to fruition.” A grand opening is planned for mid-July since she wants to ease into the menu transition and other changes. Her primary goal is provide a lighter, fresher version of a hometown supper club.
The Fairway Dining & Spirits’ staff is pictured. From left to right are Hetra Dufner, Sydney Gibbs, Elliot Dawson, Angie Levan, restaurant owner Melody Harkey-Dufner, Eric Cloud, Frances Emery and Kara Burrow.