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A pioneer in downtown Clayton has closed

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CLAYTON — The Flipside, the downtown restaurant known for its food and live music, has closed.

Owners Tim and Andie Jones announced the closing in a Facebook post on Jan. 4.

“After long discussion, we have decided that 2020 is the year we need to put our faith, family and marriage as first priorities in our lives,” the couple wrote. “We that in mind, we have made the very difficult decision to step away as owners of The Flipside effective Saturday, January 11.

“We trust our decision will be understood and appreciated as we strive to do what’s best for our family.”

In a Facebook message on Jan. 15, the Joneses said they had found a buyer for their space. “We will publicly announce future plans for the space once the details are firm and complete,” they said. “Follow our Facebook page for updates.”

Fond memories

County Commissioner Butch Lawter, who lives in Clayton, said he and his wife enjoyed their many visits to the restaurant, which sat at the corner of Second and Lombard streets. “Kim and I have a lot of great memories from the Flipside,” he said in a Facebook message. “They vary from ‘small group’ meetings where we danced to deejay Greg Bunn to trivia nights where we actually won (one time at least) to mostly quiet dinners with friends.”

“We loved listening to local entertainment, but most of all, we love the relationships we started and/or grew there,” Lawter said.

“And we loved the fact that it was one block from the house,” he added.

Jodi Sager and Cliff Morgan founded The Coffee Mill at 105 S. Lombard St. in 2000; they later opened The Flipside in the same block.

Clayton resident Dan Barbour said downtown could trace its nighttime renaissance to Sager and Morgan. “The Flipside, specifically Cliff and Jodi, paved the way for what Clayton nightlife is today,” he said in a Facebook message. “They proved that there was a demand for a late-night atmosphere with original live music and quality food.

“To me, Cliff and Jodi are the unsung heroes of downtown Clayton.”

Alan Wolf, who lives in the Cleveland community, said his wife had fond memories of The Coffee Mill. “When our kids were little, that place had a great story time on Fridays,” he said in a Facebook message. “It became a big gathering spot for moms who needed a coffee and some time with other moms and kids.”

“We went to the restaurant quite a few times,” Wolf added. “I remember after several Clayton Christmas parades we would end up there — great chicken wings, fried green beans, hot chocolate for the kids and ice cold beer for the parents.”

Jonathan Levin lives in New York City but grew up in Clayton and returns to town for the annual piano festival he hosts. “I used to go there whenever I was in town,” he said in a Facebook message. “I took some guest artists there who came to Clayton Piano Festival. The staff was always friendly and the food was great and had a lot of variety to offer, which made it an excellent choice to take guests.”