CHRISTIANSBURG — Mission BBQ is, at the very least, setting its sights on Christiansburg, according to the restaurant chain’s co-founder.
“Although we haven’t signed a lease for a location [in] Christiansburg, we love the Christiansburg community,” Mission’s co-founder Steve Newton wrote in response to an email inquiry from The Roanoke Times. “Having family and friends that live there, we would love to be in Christiansburg in the future. It would be our honor and privilege to serve and support the community there.”
Newton’s comment didn’t specify exactly when and where the chain hopes to open a Christiansburg location.
Mission BBQ, which already has a restaurant in Roanoke, has been the subject of speculation on at least one local social media forum.
In a thread in the Facebook group Everything Christiansburg, Christiansburg Mayor Mike Barber wrote in a response that Mission BBQ is expected to go in a new building at the Christiansburg Marketplace across Franklin Street from the New River Valley Mall — a longtime mostly vacant shopping center that’s undergoing a revamp.
“It’s supposed to go in there, according to what my sources have told me,” Barber said before clarifying that the news is still not official. “I do know early on that they [the Marketplace] targeted Mission and a couple other restaurants.
“Mission BBQ was on this developer’s radar long before he talked to the town about what it would like to see.”
Barber said a lot of Christiansburg residents have voiced an interest in the barbecue eatery.
“I think it will be huge,” he said. “There’s plenty of room in the town of Christiansburg for food and restaurants.”
Employment search site www.indeed.com shows several job postings in Christiansburg for Mission BBQ. The jobs advertised include cashier, cook and kitchen manager.
Among the potential tenants being pursued by developers of the Marketplace are a health foods supermarket and clothing retailers such as Burlington, Ross Dress for Less or Old Navy.
Blacksburg-based Uncork-it Inc., the Marketplace’s marketing firm, wrote in an email this week that it can’t confirm whether Mission BBQ plans to open a location in the shopping center.
In addition to its barbecue fare, Mission BBQ is known for its patriotic flair.
The restaurant chain publicizes its efforts to hire current and former military service members.
One of the chain’s traditions is its observance of the U.S. national anthem at noon.
Also, Mission BBQ opened on the 10-year anniversary of Sept. 11.