wo local friends open Midtown Grill.
Prior to opening Midtown Grill, Preston Bowen and Andrew Kelley worked for Preston’s parents at their restaurant in Cleveland, Georgia, The Soda Fountain Café. There they discovered their passion for making great food and providing quality service to customers. They started Midtown Grill because they were provided an opportunity and wanted to create something for themselves where they could do what they loved on a daily basis.
In July 2015, Preston and Andrew opened another location just down the road in Cornelia. Midtown Grill in Cornelia is located across the street from Ethicon in the Midway Shopping center. Not long after opening their second location, the two moved their original Clarkesville location up the street a few blocks. This new Clarkesville location opened in late October 2015, and is double the size of the original location.
Both Andrew Kelley and Preston Bowen grew up in the Cleveland area and graduated from White Creek Christian Academy. Andrew worked as a pharmacy tech at Lula Pharmacy for six years before starting Midtown Grill. At Lula Pharmacy, owners Amy Miller and Karen Bowling taught Andrew that having a good relationship with customers is one of the most important things for a business. Preston helped coach basketball at Truett McConnell College, where he attended to earn a degree in Sports Management. While there, he also worked for his high school as a coach and at his parents’ restaurant. Eric and Jodi Bowen showed their son the secrets of making good, quality food and running a restaurant.
Since opening Midtown Grill, much has happened to the two, Their restaurant has shown considerable growth in its two short years. Andrew and Preston received the Habersham County Chamber of Commerce “Entrepreneur of the Year” Award for 2014, and Preston married the love of his life, Hannah Carter.
On his marriage, Preston said, “It is the most wonderful thing in the world to be married to my best friend, Hannah, and to know that I will be spending the rest of my life with her.” “When we were told that we had won the award (‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ Award), we were completely shocked. We were thankful for the recognition,” said Andrew about being named Entrepreneurs of the Year. “The restaurant continues to grow, and we are grateful for all of our wonderful customers. Without them, we would not have such a successful business,” continued Andrew. Preston added, “It’s (Clarkesville) a really nice community to be a part of. The downtown area, the other businesses, and the people make every day a good day.”