The Booster Redux

Cooking for a bigger crowd

Mandy's place opens in downtown Pittsburg

A+server+at+Mandy%27s+Place+sets+down+a+plate+to+a+group++of+customers+dining+during+its+grand+opening.++Mandy%27s+place+is+owned+by+Mandy+Duncan+and+Opened+Oct.+20+and+features+Southern+cooking.+%27%27If+it%27s+not+on+my+menu%2C+I%27ll+cook+it+for+you+if+I+have+to%2C%22+Duncan+said.+%22Try+and+bring+me+a+recipe+and+I%27ll+try+cookin%27+it.%22
A server at Mandy's Place sets down a plate to a group  of customers dining during its grand opening.  Mandy's place is owned by Mandy Duncan and Opened Oct. 20 and features Southern cooking. ''If it's not on my menu, I'll cook it for you if I have to,

A server at Mandy's Place sets down a plate to a group of customers dining during its grand opening. Mandy's place is owned by Mandy Duncan and Opened Oct. 20 and features Southern cooking. ''If it's not on my menu, I'll cook it for you if I have to," Duncan said. "Try and bring me a recipe and I'll try cookin' it."

Photo by: Morgan Noe

Photo by: Morgan Noe

A server at Mandy's Place sets down a plate to a group of customers dining during its grand opening. Mandy's place is owned by Mandy Duncan and Opened Oct. 20 and features Southern cooking. ''If it's not on my menu, I'll cook it for you if I have to," Duncan said. "Try and bring me a recipe and I'll try cookin' it."

Story by Emma Fischer, Reporter

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This October, Mandy Duncan, the mother of senior Keaira and junior Deonte Duncan, turned her dream of opening up a restaurant into a reality.

“I always wanted to open up a restaurant.  If you would’ve asked me 15 years ago what I wanted to do, this is what I would tell you,” Mandy said.

The restaurant, located at 206 S. Broadway, opened on Oct. 20.

“I thought raising four kids was hard, but nothing compares to this,” Mandy said.

She bought her restaurant back in November of last year. She took two months to decide what it would be based on, and in January of this year, she began working on it.

“I spent my whole life going down to New Orleans. I feel like my heart is down there, but my home is in Kansas, so my idea was to bring a love of food that I have from a different culture back to my hometown,” Mandy said.

Her restaurant serves southern food, and everything that’s made is cooked by Mandy herself.

I spent my whole life going down to New Orleans. I feel like my heart is down there, but my home is in Kansas, so my idea was to bring a love of food that I have from a different culture back to my hometown.”

— Mandy Duncan

Since starting the restaurant, Mandy and her family’s lives have changed.

“The basic things that used to happen [don’t happen anymore],” Keaira said. “Like my mom being home every night and her being [able] to take me to school.”

Being away from her family has taken a toll on Mandy, making her question whether or not she wanted to continue fulfilling her dream.

“I wanted to give up a million times. It was just hard in a lot of ways, and I didn’t because [of] my kids,” Mandy said. “They were my total supporters. They knew how much it meant, and in my mind, they lost a lot more than I did. I want them to know that even though things get rough sometimes [and] giving up would be the easiest thing to do, they can make it happen no matter how hard it is,” Mandy said.

Keaira and Deonte have learned this lesson.

“When things get hard, just do not give up,” Keaira said. “There’s definitely going to be those obstacles, and they’re going to be very hard to overcome, but as long as you know the positive outcomes that could be there, just look past all the negatives.”

“If you have a dream, work for it,” Deonte said.

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Cooking for a bigger crowd