TEMPLE, Texas — Wes's Burger Shack & More has been serving Temple since 2004, but on Tuesday it shut its doors for the final time.
After starting in a small town outside Temple 16 years ago, then landing downtown, it finally ended up on S. 57th Street. But it was never about the location for owner, Wesley Teeters.
"The biggest takeaway and what I am going to miss the most," Teeters said. "It isn't about the money, its about the people."
Teeters has been cooking for the past 30 years, and while he makes delicious food, it's giving back to the community and the family he has grown to love.
"We are people's family and visa versa, they are our family," Teeters said. "That is the hardest part of leaving I feel like I am leaving so much family behind."
Some of his favorite memories include the annual Christmas toy drive and Thanksgiving day, where he welcomed in hundreds of community members for a free meal.
"I would cook up three or four turkeys and I told people you don't have to pay anything just sit with us and eat that is all we want," said Teeters.
Then the pandemic hit, and like many other restaurant owners, Teeters had trouble staying afloat. He said he lost $10,000 during the first month of being shut down, due to bills that still had to be paid.
"This decision didn't happen overnight," Teeters said. "But after we lost that first month I said 'I really don't want to go all the way,' I don't want to be poor and I don't want to put my family in a bind."
On Tuesday a sign was put on the door reading, "Thank you for supporting us ... Unfortunately, we are now permanently closed."
Teeters said while the restaurant may be closed he will continue to hold an annual toy drive, as well as spend much of his time volunteering at Love of Christ food pantry in Temple.