Huntertown area residents have a new place to go for pizza, salads, breadsticks and Italian grinders.
Papa's Place, 15805 Lima Road, offers carryout or delivery and opened in mid-April.
“I have got it in my blood, the spirit of an entrepreneur,” said Tim Holmes, who jointly owns the Huntertown Papa's Place with his father, Timothy A. Holmes. “I tried punching a clock for over six years, and it just wasn't there.”
Timothy A. Holmes also owns and runs a Papa's Place in Churubusco.
The Huntertown location features a variety of pizzas, including the Oscar, which according to the menu is topped with “everything but the kitchen sink.” Toppings for the Oscar include pepperoni, sausage, ground beef, ham, salami, bacon, chicken, an assortment of vegetables and mozzarella cheese.
Choosing to open a pizza shop in Huntertown was never in question. Tim Holmes and his family are originally from there.
“We wanted Huntertown but there just weren't any locations” available to house the restaurant during an initial search, he said.
A word-of-mouth tip that a building would soon be vacant led them to their current location, a former flower shop.
“We came over and looked at it and loved the building. It's a neat old building. It sits a little different from the rest of the buildings,” Holmes said.
The building sits on a corner lot at Trinity Street and Lima at an angle facing both streets.
“It is not too big, so we wouldn't be forced into or talked into sit-down dining. We want to keep it simple, offering carryout or delivery only,” he said.
“Besides pizza and breadsticks we serve sausage rolls, big sandwiches and Mom's spaghetti. Our pizza sauce, our spaghetti sauce and our dough are all Mom's recipes.”
His mother, Janice “Mama Sue” Holmes, was a longtime restaurant owner and operator in Churubusco. She died in 2012.
Papa's Place in Huntertown has eight employees.
The future looks much like the present for Papa's Place.
“I see pretty much what I see now. I see maybe extended hours,” Holmes said.
“It's a small enough space we could do more business in the hours we have now but not much. On Fridays and Saturdays we are darn near at capacity,” he said.
“People call, and we say it will be an hour (for delivery) or 45 minutes if they come pick it up.”
Holmes said expanded hours may include lunches.
“We have talked about lunch. We get a lot of cries for that. There is enough industry in Huntertown. There are a lot of requests for lunches. That could come in the very near future and will still be takeout,” he said.
The pleasure and satisfaction about the new venture are obvious.
“It's been beyond expectations. We are originally from Huntertown and there have been a lot of people come in that we haven't seen in years.
“The community has been so welcoming. The feedback we are getting on Facebook and Yelp is great,” he said.
A positive review on Yelp prompted Holmes to take a screen shot and send it to relatives.
“The first thing I did was send it to my brother, my dad, my wife and my nephew. It was pretty cool,” he said.