RIVER VIEW: Restaurant Makes Most Of Flooding

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An eastern Iowa restaurant says it won’t let a little flooding ruin business this year.

“I thought I was on a cruise ship,” diner Aaron Lotzow said while describing his experience at Big Muddy’s Restaurant on Monday. “I saw lots of water.”

Customers were pleasantly surprised to find out it was business as usual at the restaurant despite the fact that the building is surrounded by water.

“It’s still open bud, come in the back door,” said regular customer Ted Fenton. “Park in the back parking lot.”

Their giving a new meaning to the idea of waterfront dining. What was once an outdoor beer garden is now just water.

Lifelong residents of river towns like Burlington, Iowa know the importance of respecting the river and all of its power.

But, every spring, folks here are reminded what mother nature is capable of and at Muddy’s they’re no stranger to flooding, having suffered through it in 1993 and 2008.

“Both floods I’ve been watching the water rise and watching the community pull together and help us keep the restaurant open,” said Jackie Brockert, the restaurant’s manager.

She says they’ll wait and watch for it to go down. In the meantime, diners get a little extra view to go with their meal.

“I am just amazed. It’s incredible to think there are railroad tracks, there’s sidewalks, there’s streets out there.”

On Monday, the National Weather Service had the Mississippi River at Burlington sitting at 22-feet, that’s 5 feet past flood stage.

Thanks to our sister station WQAD for this story.