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Cowboy Jack's now open, requests license for outdoor recreation

Cowboy Jack's opened Monday after months of major renovations that overhauled the entire space. Staff photo by Riham Feshir1 / 3
A western theme with a mechanical bull, barn doors and wagon wheels fills 11,000 square feet of space at Cowboy Jack's. Staff photo by Riham Feshir2 / 3
The restaurant has a total of 142 interior seats in addition to 84 on the patio. Staff photo by Riham Feshir3 / 3

As soon as patrons walk into Cowboy Jack's, they're greeted by a big mechanical bull sitting in the middle of a whopping 11,000 square-foot restaurant.

Barn doors, wagon wheels, rustic chandeliers and bar tables made out of barrels are just a fraction of what makes up the western theme that's been months in the making.

Walk outside to one of the patios and you'll also see a sand volleyball court that will soon be ready for tournaments and outdoor entertainment.

Cowboy Jack's opened its doors Monday after nearly seven months of remodeling and overhauling the building that last housed Woody's Roadhouse.

The restaurant was approved for a liquor license earlier this year, but it still needed permission from the city to get its volleyball and broomball entertainment going.

Woodbury Planning Commissioners approved an outdoor recreation and entertainment Monday that will be reviewed annually or at any time there is a complaint regarding the sand volleyball court.

Not all commissioners were in favor, though.

Al Rudnickas said he didn't think a sand volleyball court fit in with the purpose of a restaurant that is also located in close proximity to a hotel and an office park.

"It's just an odd thing for me to understand," he said before voting to reject the interim conditional use permit.

City Planner Eric Searles said surrounding businesses won't be affected as much since they're only open during the day.

Red Roof Inn guests will not be disturbed either, he added, unless the restaurant violates the city's noise ordinance.

"The property owner decided to create a destination," Searles said. "And that's the rationale behind investing in the volleyball court."

The measure passed allowing volleyball and broomball to take place north of the Cowboy Jack's building until 11 p.m.

"We're so excited to have come east," Manager Kristin Copietz said. The Woodbury location joins others in Minneapolis, Plymouth, Bloomington, Otsego and St. Cloud.

The After Midnight Group acquired the space last year and completely gutted it to turn into what it has become today.

The company bought the space knowing it has gone through various concepts in a short period of time. Most recently, Woody's Roadhouse was open less than a year after changing ownership from Throwback's, where the focus was on live music.

"The big concern is people will avoid us because of what's gone on down here before," Copietz said. "We hope everyone will give us a chance."

The After Midnight Group Spokesperson Jesi Mosny said the company wanted to revive the space completely with the new plans.

"We feel that this, along with our concept and ideas, make us unique to this space," she said.

The large space has banquet rooms available for private events, as well as two patios where one can be reserved for private gatherings as well.

With 100 new employees, the restaurant will serve a menu filled with braised chicken, gourmet burgers, pot pies, soups, salads, steaks, seafood and desserts.

Managers say they plan to work with local groups to become part of the community and help with fundraisers and community partnerships.

The restaurant is open at 11 a.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Riham Feshir
Riham Feshir is a reporter and photographer for the Woodbury Bulletin. Her coverage includes Woodbury City Hall, Washington County Board of Commissioners and business news.  Follow Riham on Twitter @RihamFeshir for the latest updates.