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Johnny Morris’ historic Ozark Mill plans call for an ice cream and coffee shop called The Post.
Rendering provided by Bass Pro Shops
Johnny Morris’ historic Ozark Mill plans call for an ice cream and coffee shop called The Post.

Morris plans ice cream, coffee shop at Ozark Mill

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Bass Pro Shops founder Johnny Morris is adding historic touches to his redevelopment plans for the historic Ozark Mill.

Morris, who’s owned the mill since 1993, is planning an ice cream and coffee shop called The Post, located across the Finley River from the mill. The shop serves as Phase I of the Ozark Mill project and is expected to open in the first half of 2019, according to a news release.

“We’re excited to offer a place for friends and families to gather together for a cup of coffee or ice cream cone by the Finley River, one of the many beautiful waterways that makes our region so special,” said Megan Morris, Johnny Morris’ daughter who’s working on the mill project, in the release.

The Post is a tribute to a post office that operated within the original 1800s-era mill. Mills, according to the release, were gathering centers because of their weekly mail delivery.

The 1,300-square-foot shop is intended to help link the Ozark Mill with the city’s downtown area. A survey by the nonprofit Historic River District found coffee and ice cream are desired by community members in downtown Ozark, according to the release.

Plans are still being finalized on the mill itself, which was lifted and temporarily relocated this year so crews can rebuild its foundation. Interior restoration of the mill is expected to start later this year when it is relocated back.

Morris’ plans for the mill include tours, dining, an event venue and enhanced riverfront access, including such as activities as kayaking, said Bass Pro spokesman Jack Wlezien. More details are slated to be released in the coming months, according to the release.

In January, Morris announced plans to rehabilitate the Ozark Mill and open it to the public. Morris also owns 32 acres around the mill.

“Our intention is to protect and restore the building to honor its remarkable heritage,” Morris said in a news release at the time. “We intend to eventually open this historic facility to the public and create a very special venue that celebrates our region’s unique history, ingenuity and culture.”

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