Happy Moose in Streetsboro is still rebuilding a year after the fire

The sign outside the Happy Moose Bar and Grill reads that the restaurant at 9436 State Route 14 in Streetsboro is “opening soon.”

More:Fire at the Happy Moose restaurant in Streetsboro was discovered to be an accident

But “soon” is a relative term, owner John Nappier warns.

Nappier said the project, essentially an interior remodel of the restaurant following a fire last year, has been plagued by material delays but is finally on track to be completed in time for the restaurant’s reopening this spring. He reckons the opening will come in time for his staff to be able to serve green beers on St. Patrick’s Day.


The Streetsboro restaurant has been closed since a fire in January 2022

The restaurant, a former Eat and Park, was converted into The Happy Moose circa 2003. Nappier bought the company in 2019, facing challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Things were just starting to get back to normal on January 21, 2022, when a staff member turned on the equipment to prepare for the restaurant’s opening. Immediately, Nappier and his associates began smelling smoke, called the fire department, and evacuated.

The Happy Moose has not been open since that day. The Streetsboro Fire Department determined the cause of the fire was accidental and estimated the damage at more than $250,000.

What caused the Happy Moose fire?

Nappier said many people had told him his restaurant suffered a “fat burn,” which he says wasn’t the case at all.

Instead, firefighters blamed a process called pyrolysis. Over time, the heat from the griddle in the kitchen caused the plywood in the wall to dry out and deteriorate. On the morning of the fire, the heat from the grill caused the plywood to further degrade to the point where it became highly combustible.

The owner of the Happy Moose Bar and Grill on State Route 14 is hoping to reopen the Streetsboro restaurant in time for St. Patrick's Day.  Happy Moose has been closed since a fire in January 2022.

Nappier said the fire damaged the wall between the grill station and the dish room. The dining area was damaged by water and smoke.

“It was the craziest thing I’ve ever seen,” he said.

prepare for reopening

The restaurant recently put up a sign saying “Opening Soon,” raising many questions about the opening date. Nappier said he wishes he could give a firm date, but said it won’t be in time for Super Bowl Sunday, as much as he’d like.