LOOKEBA, Okla. (KFOR) – Surrounded by the coldest kind of blanket, a thick one by Oklahoma standards, forced all kinds of people to seek refuge.

“Perfect soup weather,” remarks a visitor to Holly J’s Place and CD’s Soups and Sandwiches.

Back in 2020, Holly Johnston and Dave Rankin found one side of Main Street Lookeba.

She liked the idea of an antique store for all of her various ‘picks’.

“I see treasure in what other people think is trash,” she smiles.

Dave thought the place could use an event space and, maybe, a lunch counter next door.

“We’ve already had good crowds to this point,” he says.

Hot, cold, and just right.

Their experience here went to both extremes.

Just before Christmas, 2021 an electrical fire just about took the whole place down.

Holly lost all her inventory.

But they did save the storefront and decided they were just too invested to give it all up.

Dave points out a different texture on one wall, “I don’t know if you can see it but we kept a lot of the original brick work.”

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Less than a year later Holly J’s Place is back open.

Holly figures, “It was probably six or seven weeks after the fire. I started back hunting.”

Their event space is fixed up.

The murals on the cafe side survived the fire.

The outside received a fresh, free coat of paint courtesy of a Keep Oklahoma Beautiful program called ‘Paint Oklahoma’.

“We love that bunch,” says Dave.

All that and the soup is on in a kitchen that Rankin is still getting ready for steady work.

“On the cafe side,” he says, “the kitchen area will be expanded.”

Today’s menu includes a BLT and a hot bowl of his specialty chicken noodle.

“It’s hot,” he warns.

After a lot of effort and more struggle than they thought they could bear, Dave and Holly think they’ve found their perfect setting, a little off the beaten path, but just right for anyone hungry enough to search them out.

For more information about Holly J’s Place go to their Facebook page here.

For more information about CD’s Soups and Sandwiches go to their Facebook page here.

Great State is sponsored by WEOKIE Credit Union