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EDJ Interview With Gary Motes of Hamburger Mary's

EatDrinkJax.com brings our readers another great interview with the owner of one of Jax's more interesting chain restaurants---Hamburger Mary's. Gary Motes shares his vision and dreams for the future with the performance based eatery after the jump!

Published November 23, 2012 in Dining & Nightlife      12 Comments    Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article


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Tell us about Hamburger Mary's.

Hamburger Mary's was originally an open air bar and grill, founded in 1972 in San Francisco. In those days there was a lot of discrimination against gays and lesbians. Hamburger Mary's welcomed them, figuring money is money, business is business. A lot of people in the gay and lesbian community know that if there's a Hamburger Mary's in their city then it's a place they can feel comfortable at without worrying about being mistreated. There are 12 in America now. We're number 12 and there's a 13th opening by the middle of next year.

The Hamburger Mary's in Jacksonville is owned by me, my brother Larry and my sister Debbie, along with her husband, Randy. We opened on May 1, 2012.

What's the overall concept of Hamburger Mary's?

The overall concept is to come in to unite cities. It normally takes about a year but in Jacksonville it's been immediate. Our audience is about 50/50 straight vs gay and lesbian. It's an opportunity for families to come in, have a great meal, and see a really fun show. Our show is always family oriented. We have lots of families who come in with everyone from kids through grandparents. There's no cursing or anything risqué. We do a late show at 11:30 pm on Friday and Saturday. We warn people that these will be more adult oriented, but if there are any children in attendance we tone it right down and make it PG.

 When did the drag revue become a part of the restaurant?

I'm not sure exactly when it started, it just became an opportunity for the straight community to have a chance to see a revue without having to go to a bar or club - places most families can't go to.



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12 Comments

jaxeeyore

November 23, 2012, 12:22:32 PM
The establishment of Hamburger Mary's is one of the most positive things that has occurred in the Jacksonville GLBT community in the last fifteen years.  Thanks to the owners and staff, we now have a modern, diversified, clean, and fun entertainment venue that we can be proud of. The few GLBT hangouts in our area are old and worn out. One nightclub that shall remain nameless is downright unsafe. I think Hamburger Mary's deserves the support and best wishes of the entire Jacksonville community.  Lets all be hopeful the owners will be able to follow through with their plans to open Martini Mary's as well. 

Jaxson

November 25, 2012, 10:58:59 PM
While I am glad that Hamburger Mary's is a family-friendly establishment, I cannot help but question parents who would take small children out after 11:30PM.  Would it not be nice for there to be a time for the acts to go 'blue' without having to scour the room for small children? 

Swampussy

November 26, 2012, 09:36:48 AM
I look lovely in a pair of high heels and nylons.  Can I try out for the show?

RiversideLoki

November 26, 2012, 03:38:30 PM
While I am glad that Hamburger Mary's is a family-friendly establishment, I cannot help but question parents who would take small children out after 11:30PM.  Would it not be nice for there to be a time for the acts to go 'blue' without having to scour the room for small children? 

I gotta agree, there. Dave and Buster's does it, HM should consider it as well.

I've been there for several bingo nights, and I can say without a doubt that the language can get a little too raunchy for the little ones. She does do a fantastic job of making bingo calling hilarious, though.

As far as the food is concerned? I would go here for a burger any day of the week over 5 Guys or any place similar. Oh man, those are some good burgers.

stephendare

November 26, 2012, 03:40:04 PM
isnt it a corporate policy?  So that no raunchy videos show up on youtube or anything like that?

Jaxson

November 26, 2012, 06:17:57 PM
If it is a blanket policy banning profanity, I agree with Stephen about wanting to avoid appearing on YouTube or elsewhere on the Internet.  But, based on what the article says, it implies that the talent has to keep a sharp eye out for the small ones to ensure that their routines are appropriate.  During lunch and dinner hours?  I believe that it makes the most sense.  In the later hours of the night?  I think that adults deserve their own space for fun after 11:30PM.  I wonder aloud why would a parent want to take a small child out that late anyways.  Besides, I believe that the kind of parents who have no bedtime for their offspring might be a bit more progressive about what their children are exposed to (e.g. films, video games, etc.).

EatDrinkJax

November 27, 2012, 11:07:11 AM
I don't want to speak for Gary but the impression I got interviewing him is that the 11:30pm shows are definitely intended for more of an adult audience but if the choice is to ask children to leave or tone it down HM has opted to tone it down.

Riverrat

January 14, 2013, 02:34:52 PM
Hamburger Mary's has been an incredible addition to Jacksonville - both on the dining scene and the entertainment scene. Great food and very entertaining shows! I do wish the location were either downtown or Riverside, but it's close enough to the action I suppose.

BackinJax05

January 14, 2013, 03:09:42 PM
Dumb question: Does Hamburger Mary's serve other entree's, such as chicken sandwiches? The place, and concept, sound interesting - however - I dont eat red meat. Thx

Non-RedNeck Westsider

January 14, 2013, 03:19:24 PM
You could always just look HERE

Riverrat

January 14, 2013, 03:39:04 PM
Dumb question: Does Hamburger Mary's serve other entree's, such as chicken sandwiches? The place, and concept, sound interesting - however - I dont eat red meat. Thx

Yes! I'm sure you took a look at the menu in the post above, but their other entrees are really good too. The meatloaf is a favorite, as is the Bird of Paradise (chicken wrap), and their chicken tenders are great (and housemade according to the article). My fiance and I sometimes split the "Mary's Handbag" ...a mix of all of the apps on the menu. Delicious.

BackinJax05

January 15, 2013, 03:10:27 PM
^^ Thanx
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