Local entrepreneurs Butch and Sherri Broome have shared a partnership in life and in business for many years. Through the hardships and victories of owning a business, they have continued to persevere. With a focus on family and community the couple plans to push forward in 2017 as they always have.
Both Butch and Sherri attended the same high school in Columbia, South Carolina. According to Butch they ran in different crowds and didn’t really know one another until after high school. The two fell in love and have been building a life together ever since.
Now, nearly 40 years later they own one of the most well-known spots in South Bryan; Fish Tales Restaurant & Fort McAllister Marina.
Butch grew up watching his father work hard and pursue different ventures in business. He never felt pressured to stay and work for his father. If anything, he was encouraged to chase what made him happy and has always known it would take more than handouts, it would take hard work. In 1997, he came to the area with a business venture of his own. With no more than two nickels to rub together, he stuck with it.
"I had the opportunity to start a TruGreen company here. Had I not met Charlie Stafford soon after arriving, I would not have landed in Richmond Hill. There is no telling where I would be or what I would be doing," said Butch.
Broome sold TruGreen in 2006 and by this time had financially set himself and his family up for a nice retirement.
In 2007, Sherri began her own business venture when she opened Pawparrazi. As Sherri began pouring herself into her new business, Butch found himself wanting to try something new too.
It started with an old three ring binder Butch kept from a seafood restaurant his father owned.
"Toby Roberts is like my adopted daddy, he is a lot like my father in that nobody had ever given me anything material wise. But, like my father, he gave me opportunities. Toby gave me the opportunity to start this restaurant. I gave him my vision and he gave me an opportunity. I wouldn’t have any of this if it weren’t for that," said Butch.
The Broome’s gutted the restaurant and renovated it. They knew they wanted it to have a Caribbean vibe and with the help of their two sons, family, and friends in the community they made their vision come to life. It took almost four months to renovate and in 2009 it finally opened for business.
"When we first opened, I made my employees park in front to make it look like people were here. It did help when we started doing that. In business, or parenting or in marriage you can always figure out how to do things better, you just must figure it out," said Butch.
For the past several years Sherri has been managing the Marina. In August of 2009, they decided to seize the opportunity and officially take over as owners. In June of 2016, they welcomed Will Collins, general manager for the restaurant.
The restaurant and marina serve as host for a number of community events, and a recent oyster roast served as a test run for an upcoming annual event put on to raise awareness and funding for Ogeechee Riverkeeper.
The oyster roast is set for Jan. 26. Proceed go toward efforts of the Ogeechee Riverkeeper to preserve and protect the Ogeechee and Canoochee rivers and other coastal waterways.
Fish Tales serves as a corporate sponsor for the organization.