At this point, I can't really remember what South Frederica looked like before some of Owensboro's favorite restaurants showed up there.

In my mind, I can still see Southside Barbecue just on the other side of the bypass and then Towne Square Mall.

But I can't even picture the mall without everything else around it.

So when DID these casual dining establishments open? Some of these years might surprise you.


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I can't believe Applebee's has been there 25 years. But then again, I distinctly remember the '97 flood and the Applebee's parking lot being the last vestige of dry land before Lake Daviess County.

O'CHARLEY'S - 1996

Google Street View

This was THE hot gift certificate its first Christmas in Owensboro. And, yeah, gift CERTIFICATE. We didn't have gift CARDS yet.


Google Street View

Do you remember the Mexican restaurant that was there before the Roadhouse opened? Nope, neither did I until I ran across an item in an old Messenger-Inquirer at the library.


Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

I guess you could consider this a mini-boom on South Frederica. I remember thinking how odd it was to have a Cracker Barrel that wasn't sitting right on an interstate highway.

Google Street View
Google Street View

I remember when people wondered if we'd EVER get an Olive Garden. It's the same way today with OTHER restaurants that have yet to show up in Owensboro. (But give it time, I say.)