Townsend community remembers Walker’s Catfish Cabin after overnight fire

Ownership said they’re still deciding on whether or not they’ll be able to rebuild and reopen.
Townsend remembers Walker’s Catfish Cabin after overnight fire
Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 11:36 PM EDT
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TOWNSEND, Tenn. (WVLT) - While fireworks filled the sky across East Tennessee, a well-known Townsend restaurant was burning to the ground.

Co-owner Keith Guire said they still don’t know how the building burned down, but under his new ownership, the restaurant was only in business for 45 days before the fire. During that time, Guire said they sold $79,000 in BBQ and catfish and were very busy.

“I’m going to miss that catfish,” said Tim Millsaps, who lives nearby.

According to Guire, the building that burned down was rebuilt in 1979, which at the time was named Wilson’s. After that, it became the Back Porch and would eventually become Walker’s Catfish Cabin after several years.

For some in the area, it was a place to go and spend time with loved ones.,

“Our church used to have breakfast there, and I’d go with my mom,” said one customer.

Another frequent customer said they used to love getting the bread they made.

Guire said it’s unclear if they’ll rebuild at this point as that decision is yet to be made.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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