Liberty City Council on Tuesday, April 13, authorized City Manager Tom Warner to negotiate a lease with Scott and Jolee Neal, owners of Red Top Treats in Liberty, to manage the clubhouse at the Liberty Municipal Golf Course.
The Neals say they are looking forward to relocating their popular business, which currently operates out of a food truck at the corner of Travis and Martin Luther King Jr. streets in Liberty, to the clubhouse three miles away as soon as golf course renovations allow.
The Neals intend to continue offering many of their favorite comfort foods with a twist – Swamp Shrimp, Twisted Zucchini, Fancy Schmancy Fries, Onion Strings, Gourmet Chicken Salad, Chicken Libertad, Chicken-fried Steak Finger Basket and Seared Tuna Platter. However, look for an expanded menu to also include fine dining options.
The name Red Top Treats will be scrapped for The Oaks at Magnolia Ridge, a name that acknowledges a large oak tree outside the clubhouse and incorporates the golf course’s former name. Scott told Council after Tuesday night’s vote that he hopes to create a nostalgic ambience inside the restaurant and will be looking for historical photographs from the city of Liberty in the coming weeks or months leading up to the grand opening.
Once the clubhouse restaurant is open, Scott said Red Top Treats will be closed. He feels confident that his customers will follow them to the new location, especially with the expanded menu.
“We’ve had a lot of people pushing us to open a restaurant for a while now,” he said. “Most golf courses have notoriously bad food where you get frozen hamburgers or hotdogs. Forget all of that. We are going to offer food that is capable of being eaten on the go while also providing options for fine dining inside the clubhouse.”
The clubhouse seats a maximum of 130 people, which could actually accommodate small wedding parties and other events, Neal said.
Once the ink is dry on the contract, the Neals will start the process of getting a license through the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission to provide beer and mixed drinks on the premises. This process could take up to 60 days.
Finding a restaurateur to successfully operate the clubhouse is part of the City’s overall vision for the golf course.
In March, the City awarded a bid for $141,796 to Keeling Company for new irrigation equipment and a bid of $2,744,541.54 to Duininck, Inc., for golf course renovations that include a new driving range, fibre-mesh concrete cart path and curbing, improved irrigation and drainage, fairway improvements and bunkers. The firm of Jeffrey D. Blume, Ltd., was hired for design and construction observation services in 2020. In recent months, the city also added new golf carts to enhance the playing experience for golfers.
In developing the design for the renovations, the City invited local stakeholders and golf course advocates to participate in discussions.
Golf course renovations began last week and should be complete by late summer. During this time, it will be closed to the public.