Orlando Police have made an arrest in the suspected arson of Goff’s Drive-in, the landmark Parramore ice cream stand that opened in 1948. A fire shut the business down in May. OPD now say that 58-year-old Orlando resident Alfred Kirkland deliberately set the business ablaze. No one was present at the time of the early morning fire and there were no injuries. The police report says that Kirkland can be seen in a surveillance video pouring a flammable liquid on plywood and setting it ablaze. Goff’s owner, Todd Peacock, had planned to reopen the ice cream stand in July but has come up against Orlando’s convoluted permitting and inspection process. Goff’s wasn’t unfamiliar with violence. In 1951 it was threatened by members of the Ku Klux Klan for allowing Blacks and whites to order ice cream from the same counter.
Popular downtown bars The Lodge and The Woods will close at the end of the month. The owners, according to a post on The Lodge’s Facebook page, have decided to sell. That bar has been in operation for more than 19 years; The Woods would have turned 10 in November. Although the post was headed “That’s all, folks!” it also said, “This is not goodbye.”
Shaquille O’Neal’s fast-food concept Big Chicken will be opening in Orlando this year. Thank god, our long chicken-sandwich drought is finally over! O’Neal started the chain in 2018 but is only now making it to his former hometown via a franchising agreement with DMD Ventures.
Brother Jimmy’s, the New York-based barbecuer that wants you to “put some south in yo mouth,” has opened a second location at Icon Park.
Speaking of barbecuers, Sonny’s BBQ is offering a free meal to first responders Sept. 12-15. You can go to the Florida-based smoker’s website to see if you qualify. Hint: a first responder is someone who answers the call of a suspicious fire or arrests an arsonist. It is not someone who shouts out the answer at a trivia contest before anyone else.