Well now who’s gonna fill their shoes…er, building?
The George Jones Museum, a four-story complex in downtown Nashville featuring memorabilia from the Possum (including the infamous John Deere mower), as well as a restaurant, live music venue and bar, has officially closed.
According to a post on their Facebook page, the abrupt closure was brought on by workforce shortages and supply chain issues that caused difficulties in maintaining a consistent product.
“It has been a difficult 2 years for so many – our company has been no different. From the pandemic (and the starts and stops there) all the way through to the 2nd Ave bombing one year ago – we have fought for what is right for our loyal staff and local partners. As many business owners know, between the workforce shortages and difficulty with consistency of products, it is a challenge day to day (to say the least) to make a business viable.
For these reasons, it is with a heavy heart that we announce we are closing The George Jones Entertainment Venue after a beautiful run.
The museum and all of its contents are being handled with care. There will be more to come on where this exhibit will land next.
We would like to extend a big THANK YOU to all of the fans, guests, staff (present and past) local partners and friends that have come through our doors over the last few years. We feel so fortunate to have shared terrific memories, food, drink and music.”
First opened in 2015, The George Jones was located on 2nd Avenue in downtown Nashville, just off of Broadway. The museum and bar started as a partnership between Jones’ widow Nancy and her business partner Kirk West, and featured tons of George Jones memorabilia donated by Nancy herself.
But after West was convicted of bank fraud and sent to prison, the venue was sold to a Nashville investor group called Possum Holdings, LLC.
Nancy remained a fixture at the bar honoring her late husband, though, and visitors often got the chance to meet her while they were visiting The George Jones.
Like all bars and restaurants, though, The George Jones was hit hard when Nashville forced the venues to close due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And then at the end of 2020, the Christmas Day bombing just a block away shut The George Jones down yet again.
There’s no word yet on what will happen to all the memorabilia, which included not only many of Jones’ stage outfits but also a 1954 Chevy that belonged to Jones and one of his a green John Deere mowers (although it wasn’t the one that he made his infamous ride to the liquor store on).
The museum said in its release, though, that the memorabilia is being handled with care and there will be more to come on the exhibit’s future home soon.
And I’ve gotta admit, the museum’s closure surprised me. Although it’s been a little while since I’ve been there, it was in a prime location in downtown Nashville and seemed like it was usually packed. And its rooftop bar also had one of the best views of the city that you could find.
I’m personally sad to see The George Jones go. And I’m also hoping that whatever moves in to take its place isn’t some generic bar themed after some pop country artist like so many others that have opened in downtown Nashville in the past few years.