Robert Revives the Jersey Shore on Holiday: Impossible 2

by in Shows, December 8th, 2013

Holiday: Impossible 2“It’s our biggest mission ever: two locations, three days, $50,000,” Robert Irvine said of what he was about to take on in Ship Bottom, Long Island Beach, N.J. Just one year ago, that community was devastated — along with so many others along the Eastern Seaboard — when Hurricane Sandy smashed on shore with powerful winds and rain, plus multiple-feet-high storm surges. In the spirit of the season and true to Robert’s selflessness, the Restaurant: Impossible host teamed up with Lexus for Holiday: Impossible 2 to give two Ship Bottom businesses that were nearly decimated by the storm a second chance to thrive. With the help of Lexus’ generous donation of extra time and an increased budget, plus the commitment of his design and construction teams from Restaurant: Impossible, Robert transformed LBI Pancake House and Ship Bottom Volunteer Fire Company, both once waterlogged from the storm and in dire need of updates if they were to have any chance at lasting futures.

While it’s rare for Robert to undertake a project of this magnitude, it’s no surprise that he didn’t let the feat stop him from completing it on time and with the very best results. After just a few days of work, he reopened LBI Pancake House for owners Bill and Carole Waldron as a vibrant, welcoming eatery worthy of the neighborhood, and he introduced a revitalized kitchen and lounge area at Ship Bottom Volunteer Fire Company President Dan English and Fire Chief Wade Bradley, as well as the company’s 30 members. Read on below to hear from Carole and Dan, find out how their locations are doing today and see behind-the-scenes photos.

Holiday: Impossible 2

Carole says of the all-new LBI Pancake House: “Bill and I absolutely love the new design, the color [and] the brightness of the restaurant. My favorite is the mosaic wall.” She notes that, in particular, customers “are thrilled the booths are back, plus they love the color combination” of the redone interior.

Given that this time of year is the off-season at the Shore, Bill and Carole haven’t begun serving lunch yet at LBI Pancake House, but Carole explains, “We love the beach-to-go idea and are most anxious to advertise and execute it next season.” Looking back on the transformation, Carole says, “Robert gave and exhibited such enthusiasm for the restaurant business and showed us that change is good.” She adds, “His ideas were magnificent and we are excited to follow them out.”

Holiday: Impossible 2At the fire company, “Everyone is just loving the new spaces,” according to Dan. He also says that the “membership is getting better.”

The team at the firehouse is taking full advantage of the updates, Dan says. “We have noticed that a lot more people are hanging out upstairs in the lounge .… Nobody ever hung out up there before.” He explains: “Now we are holding our monthly meetings downstairs in the hall. Once [the] meeting is over we go straight upstairs to the Robert Irvine lounge … and cook and just hang out! Watching TV, playing pool, shuffleboard.”

Dan offered sincere thanks to everyone who made the transformation possible, saying, “Words cannot express enough what it means to the members of the fire company. You have changed the whole morale and atmosphere here.”

More from Restaurant Revisited:

Mike La Susa’s Italian Restaurant (December 4)
Seven (November 27)
Georgia Boy Cafe (November 20)
Coach Lamp Restaurant & Pub (November 13)
The Windsor 75 (November 6)
Ducky’s Family Restaurant (October 30)
Mama Campisi’s Restaurant (October 23)
Aponte’s Pizzeria (August 25)
Benner Street (July 28)
Hurley’s American Grille (July 21)
Kalico Kitchen (July 14)
Angelo’s (June 23)
Pier West Restaurant (June 16)
Pinehurst Country Lodge (June 9)
Bryan’s Smokehouse (May 26)
Wagon Wheel Family Restaurant (May 19)
Mom & Dad’s Italian Restaurant (May 12)
Smitty’s Restaurant (April 28)
Old World Italian Restaurant (April 21)
Joe Willy’s Seafood House (April 14)
Sweet Tea’s Restaurant & Catering (March 24)
Soup to Nuts Diner (March 17)
Caseyville Cafe (March 13)
Maniaci’s Italian Restaurant (March 10)
Dinner Bell Restaurant (February 27)
Nanny Goat’s Cafe & Feed Bin (February 20)
Sapori D’Italia (January 23)
Windseeker Restaurant (January 16)
Whiskey Creek Steakhouse (January 2)

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Comments (55)

  1. Meredith says:

    Where did Sheryl go? Didn't see her in the end for what she did.

  2. Manahawkin Mama says:

    So nice of Robert Irvine and his team to restore two places on LBI who desperately needed some assistance. Not to be forgotten are those at Lexus who helped to make this happen. Thank you all!

  3. lesscan says:

    To all those people who have complained about the Lexus product placements in all the previous episodes, can go suck it! THIS is why Lexus is on every episode! Because they donate their money to make things happen! How much money have YOU donated instead of complaining?!

    • Julie B says:

      It's true. I don't recall any other corporate sponsorship. Seems like Food Network bears all the cost for the other eps.

      • ritgar says:

        Except for their pimping SYSCO in a few really annoying episodes. Thank goodness they aren't doing that any more!

      • Zebra says:

        Lexus and Food Network are very interconnected. Almost everything has some sort of Lexus placement in it. I've seen several of the Iron Chefs (not necessarily during the Iron Chef show) with a "Lexus" brand on their chef jackets. When R:I went to Joplin last year, it was completely sponsored by Lexus. Also, Robert is almost always seen driving his Lexus in most of the other episodes. R:I is one of the few shows I watch on a regular basis, so I can't place all of the other Lexus branding I've seen on Food Network, but it's definitely there. I'm not saying this is an issue, just pointing out that the relationship is there.

      • GiveARat's says:

        Are you kidding?

        Do you really think FN would air this show if it was not making a PROFIT???

        What costs is FN bearing???

        As for Lexus, they bought a very easy $50,000 worth of advertising with a $10,000 check. Don't make them out to be saints. It's just business.

    • mangaku says:

      Way to put it lesscan!!! BOOOYAAAAAA !!!!!

    • GiveARat's says:

      Better that you suck it, lesscan. You bought it hook, line, and sinker. You might as well enjoy it, fool.

  4. ladydawgfan says:

    Cheryl outdid herself on this episode!!! What a GORGEOUS job she did on the firehouse lounge!!! Well done all around!!!

  5. Rhonda says:

    That was a super show. Thank you for all you have done for us.

  6. Epic Fail says:

    I just started watching this and since it's late, I probably won't finish it until tomorrow. I saw the first restauant had re-opened before R:I showed up, don't know about the firehouse yet. How many restaurants haven't been able to re-open who could have used the help more than those that had?

    • pretendernx01 says:

      They probably would have taken more than 3 days and $50,000 to fix though.

      • Epic Fail says:

        Not if they had done just basic cleaning and repairs. A gawdawful looking wall size fancy mosaic was not needed to rehab that restaurant, which had already re-opened and was doing business. They needed marketing more.

        Painting over paneling (another of Irvine and his designers habits that annoys the **** out of me) and other areas that didn't need it and fancying up that firehouse hall were among the many things that could have be skipped to help a few more restaurants with the basics who are trying to re-open, but haven't been able to because of the cost/damage involved

        That 3 days, $50,000 and volunteer effort could have been put to better and more productive use..

        • Rhonda says:

          The hall wasn't done by the show. Just the kitchen and lounge.

          • Julie B says:

            Yeah, I thought they would do the hall, really rehab it so it could bring in more money. But I guess it didn't need it.

          • Mention it says:

            I think they needed the kitchen done so they could make the meals that brought the people to the hall? I think I remember hearing the Chief say that.

          • Epic Fail says:

            I thought about that right after I hit post. I had thinking that the hall, which generates an income for the running of the F.D. and helps the community would have been a better use of resources than the lounge.

            But, there are a couple of jugheads here who will disagree.

        • Edward Harding says:

          Such negative comments and yes every dollar could always be better used but Robert can't help everyone. This is a network that helps and gives hope to everyone and for that I am thankful, maybe they could just do nothing and then people would not need to make negative remarks. I sometimes wonder just how much volunteer work people that have such negative remarks have given for people in need. I can say I work on this effort every day and am truly blessed for it.

          • Epic Fail says:

            As I said, a better use of time, money and volunteers by Irvine and Co. could have helped more. If you and the jughead replying before you can't understand that, there's no hope for either of you or anyone losing out due to your ideas of "help". Those ideas are pretty warped.

        • Selfish says:

          Hey Epic – have you ever tried to take paneling down???? Painting over it is the best way to deal with this – unless, of course, you want to re-sheetrock it! You have nothing of interest to post on this – and it's all about you isn't it?

          • Epic Fail says:

            Hey Selfish – have you ever tried just leaving something the way it is???? Of course not. That's because you are as your name describes, you would rather see a few firefighters get a fancy new lounge than a couple of more restaurants get back on their feet.

            Nothing of interest is right, along with your name, it describe you to a tee.

        • robin311 says:

          Seriously, do you have ANY idea what those VOLUNTEER firefighters went through during that storm? They deserve a simple little room to relax and kick back.

          • Epic Fail says:

            Tell that to the nearly destroyed restaurants in that area that could have been helped if not for that "simple little room to relax and kick back" and other poor resource using choices.

            Seriously, you REALLY have a SCREWED UP set of PRIORITIES.

            Reviewing the definition of the word VOLUNTEER and a look at the mission statements of organizations like the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity and others will teach you what the real reward of VOLUNTEERING is. I'll tell you now, it's not a "(not so) simple little room to relax and kick back". Far from it.

          • robin311 says:

            epic fail – are you from long beach island? where you living here after the hurricane? and i honestly ask that in a 'non smart ass' manner because if you do live here then you have every right to be critical but if you don't then why are you on here posting?

          • ritgar says:

            Oh my goodness, what a WHAAA. Take a nap, will you

          • GiveARat's says:

            Epic, I don't always agree with you, but this time I most definitely do. I had the same thoughts as you. That $60,000 (including the — Lexus, wasn't it? — donation) and all of those volunteers could have helped a dozen restaurants get back on their feet.

            For those of you who are remaining clueless, Epic did not say that R:I did not do good things… just that they could have done so much more with all of those resources.

            The priorities of the clueless are indeed hard to understand.

          • Jersey Shore girl says:

            $60k would have helped a dozen get back on their feet? You obviously arent from LBI, or the area or you would know it was complete devastation!! This restaurant was from the OTHER end of the Island which received moderate damage compared to many more.

          • cat says:

            MAYBE a Half-Dozen, No WAY a dozen….

          • volunteers mom says:

            Our volunteer fire company brought donations to LBI firehouses within a few days after the storm. You have no idea what they went though or the devastation that was done to their companies. It was heart warming to see them get this help.

    • PBJR says:

      Taco, is that you??

  7. StickinToIt says:

    This was a wonderful effort, but I'm confused. These venues were destroyed by Sandy. Didn't these people have insurance to cover the damaged goods and repairs??

    • pretendernx01 says:

      Insurance doesn't cover every expense, obviously it would have some since they had a clean, workabe building standing but like Robert said you could see where they ran out of money and the painting just stopped.

      And some places get away with making you buy a separate flood insurance that not everyone knows you have to get.

    • lbilove says:

      Many people did not have floor insurance and those who did are still fighting with their companies to get payment. Many, many people are still not even in their homes because they either didn't have insurance or insurance won't pay. Our entire community was devistated

    • Tamara B says:

      A lot of insurance companies consider a flood to be an act of God and wouldn';t cover it unless you specifically bought flood insurance and since a storm of this magnitude was unprecidented for the area many probably did not. Also some insurance companies will fight you tooth and nail to not give you the money. For example when my mother and I lived in a 2 story townhouse apartment we had renter's insurance . Lightning hit the row of apartments and caught fire. We and only one other person had renters insurance. They gave us a settlement but one of the things they didn't allow was loss of use even though the roof and the floor of my bedroom was burnt away.

  8. Robin says:

    Wow… just wow. I'm still sniffing. Great effort, great people, and a great feel-good story. Thanks, Robert, Lexus, RI team, and everyone involved.

  9. Critique Pro says:

    Robert said that the firehouse catering generates $20,000 a week! So he put them back in business. These volunteers are really in the catering business. Nice that they have a beautiful break room.

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