Southern Sisters Restaurant in Thomasville is closing

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THOMASVILLE, N.C. -- A popular downtown Thomasville restaurant announced Wednesday on its Facebook page that it will be closing its doors for good.

Southern Sisters restaurant owners, Joy and Chris Thompson, said in the Facebook post that they have some "extremely exciting projects ahead," such as launching a line of food products to be sold in grocery stores. The restaurant opened in 2012 and will serve its last meal Saturday evening.

"We did see more people in the downtown area once they opened," City Manager Kelly Craver said. "They were pioneers."

Craver said the restaurant attracted people from all over the state to Thomasville. Some worry its closing could negatively impact the downtown area.

"We don't know that [its closing] is going to stop the movement forward," Craver said. "But certainly, it's going to slow things down."

Lisa King, the owner of nearby restaurant S&S Grill, said she is sad to see a fellow downtown restaurant close.

"A lot of people will miss them being there," King said.

King said there was never a sense of competition between the two, but rather a common cause to serve those downtown.

"I'm sad to see [Joy Thompson] leave," King said. "A few weeks ago, we had our deep fryer go out. And I was scrambling to get one. And she actually let us borrow one. She saved the day."

Thompson gained national attention after competing on a show on Food Network. FOX8 contacted Joy Thompson, who said all interview requests needed to go through the Food Network. FOX8 reached out to the Food Network, but never heard back.

FOX8 reported in May that Southern Sisters owed nearly a quarter million dollars in back taxes. The IRS did not return FOX8's call to request information on the status of that debt. It is unknown if that factored into Southern Sisters' closing.