Cityscape

Overland Park restaurant serving a BBQ sundae is closing

Fireside BBQ’s What-Not sampler with (from left) cheesy corn, cheesy potatoes, homemade sausage, turkey,
ribs, brisket and baked beans in the center.
Fireside BBQ’s What-Not sampler with (from left) cheesy corn, cheesy potatoes, homemade sausage, turkey, ribs, brisket and baked beans in the center. Special to the Star

Greg Barnes had a 32-year career with the Overland Park Fire Department, where his skills as a cook had him pulling kitchen duty more often than most.

He also went out on the barbecue competition circuit with his father, and later with a fellow firefighter, and catered events for 15 years — when he was off from his 24-hour firefighter shifts.

So after he retired, he took his barbecue skills and opened Fireside BBQ at 10400 Mastin St. in Overland Park. But after four years as a full-time restaurateur, Barnes is retiring to his new home in the Ozarks.

“The restaurant business is for the birds. I’m here from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.,” he said. “I’m too old and I’m not having a life. I want to play a bit.”

The Fireside menu included many of the barbecue favorites Barnes grew up on — ham, chicken, as well as ribs, beef brisket, turkey, pulled pork, sausage and burnt ends. For dessert, he offered a dump cake and a barbecue sundae with a choice of meat and two sides in a to-go cup.

Barnes plans to close on Sept. 28. He has five mostly part-time employees.

“I envy the restaurants that can stick with it and ride it out,” Barnes said. “But I’ve had a lot of fun and met a lot of nice people.”

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