Eddie Boy Woerner says he expects to find a new location for Flippers soon.

By John Mullen, photo by Shelley Patterson, C-Shelz Photography

September 20, 2019 – Orange Beach, AL – (OBA®) – Flippers is closing in Bear Point Marina and plans are in the works to reopen at a new location.

“We’re not going to end Flipper’s,” owner Eddie Boy Woerner said. “Flipper’s is not going to end.

When Woerner decided to branch out from the family farming and sod business to go into the restaurant business in 2007, he got some advice from friends who owned restaurants.

“Eddie Spence and Richard Schwartz both said if you can pull it off at the end of that road, you can pull it off it anywhere,” Woerner said. Spence was one of the founders of the Shrimp Basket chain of restaurants and still owns The Steamer and Mikee’s Seafood in Gulf Shores and Schwartz has owned restaurants in the area for 30 years including the wildly popular Doc’s Seafood Shack and Oyster Bar, Doc’s Seafood and Steaks and Hazel’s Nook.

He’s about to test that theory by moving Flippers Seafood and Oyster Bar restaurant to a different location hoping to continue the success that he enjoyed in Bear Point. Final details are still being worked out but negotiations are underway for the old Nolans building in Gulf Shores.

“By the end of the year, we are no longer down in Bear Point Marina,” Woerner said. “Flippers will be moving. It’s going to be just as good as the old Flipper’s was with the music, food and everything else.”

Flippers Seafood and Oyster Bar has thrived at Bear Point Marina where no other restaurants had enjoyed extended success. At the end of this year, the lease expires and owners of the marina and restaurant building are looking to move in a different direction. Woerner said Bear Point Marina owner Craig Reeves and his wife are planning to open a new restaurant at the location.

“We’ve got a lot invested and it’s worked well for us,” Woerner said. “It’s gotten better every year. We’re climbing at a rate of 10-plus percent a year. Flipper’s turned into a real good deal. It’s crazy what that has done.”

Flippers is quite literally the end of the line if you’re traveling east on Canal Road in Orange Beach and turn north on Bay La Launch a few blocks. In 12 years, with his sister Kathy Adams at the helm for most of that time, Flippers became an institution with tourists and with a strong local following that packed the outside tiki bar nightly.

“Number one you’ve got the boat traffic and that’s not going to move,” Woerner said. “And then you’ve got a neighborhood and all them people have golf carts and they run down there and go to the tiki bar. So they’ve got a captured audience in the tiki bar.”

Kathy Adams will play an important role in the transition and helping longtime staff move with them or find other jobs. Tracy Adams, who has many years of marketing experience with Perdido Beach Resort and Brett Robinson will be the general manager at the new place, Woerner said.