Thanks to Times Herald for this:
When Joe Henninger first saw a small island in Clay Township, it was overgrown and had a lot of weeds. And he thought it was special.
“I could see the potential,” he said, and years later is now developing a restaurant there.
Henninger and business partner Brian Browe are building Cabana Blue Lakefront Sports Bar and Grill.
It will be located on the 4-acre Blue Horseshoe Island at 7317 Dyke Road.
The project broke ground in early September 2020 and there’s a good chance it could open before the 2021 boating season, Henninger said.
The restaurant and a space for events and tents will be open the first season and there are plans to install a pool in the future.
Hours are expected to be 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday and 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday.
The restaurant will be 4,624 square feet, have a covered patio area of another 1,998 square feet.
There will be eleven 10-foot-tall garage doors, 160 poles for boats to dock at and 106 parking spaces, he said.
Henninger said they don’t know yet how many employees the restaurant will need, but they are planning to hire bartenders and cooks locally to provide jobs in the area.
The menu will be similar to traditional bar food but higher quality, not frozen products. There will be fresh salads, fish and it will try to provide gluten free and keto friendly options. Henninger said he has a friend in Flint who is helping with the menu and has a wings recipe that is “absolutely to die for.”
There will be TVs in the restaurant and it will be big on having music “vibing in the place.” They want it to be a touch more upscale and be a friendly, lively restaurant, a boaters’ destination, a place for parties with a great westerly view.
“That sunset’s popping every night,” Henninger said.
Where the restaurant is located is probably one of the best places in the Lake St. Clair area for sunsets, Clay Township Supervisor Artie Bryson said.
“We’re pretty much known as the destination community,” he said.
Henninger has been using local people and suppliers for the project, which has helped stimulate the economy. The restaurant will bring people to the area to spend money at other places and will help those businesses as well, Bryson said.
He said when someone opens a restaurant they’re busy with people just trying it. The trick is getting people to come back and this restaurant has the view and a good location.
“If they have good food it should be a success,” said.