Crime tied to closure of Overton Square restaurant

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two Midtown businesses are closing their doors, and the owners of one of the establishments are blaming part of their decision on crime.

The for lease sign is already in the window of Belly Acres on Trimble Place in Overton Square.

The restaurant announced the closure on Monday and encouraged customers to visit the Regalia location on Poplar Avenue until further notice.

The company said it was closing due to “staffing, safety concerns, and the decline of patrons visiting Overton Square.”

There are at least three other empty storefronts in the Overton Square area.

City Council Member Chase Carlisle said he didn’t know exactly what caused Belly Acres to close it’s Midtown restaurant, but acknowledged that crime in Memphis is impacting small businesses.

Carlisle said it’s critically important to protect small businesses and many of the restaurants he’s talked with are seeing a decline in in-person dining.

“They’ve seen especially with the ability coming out of the pandemic with people getting comfortable ordering service that it’s much easier for them to deliver at home and they feel safer than it is to go out,” he said.

Outdoors Inc. is also leaving its Union Avenue Location after 35 years. On Facebook, owners said they hoped to focus their efforts on the Poplar location and their website.

“This move allows us to invest more deeply in our flagship store. We are confident that this change will enable us to serve you even better in the years to come,” the company said.

Outdoors Inc. said it plans to hold a special liquidation sale before it officially closes, offering great deals on outdoor gear and equipment.

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