PAWLEYS ISLAND, S.C. (WMBF) - Before the upscale shopping, beach stores and traffic, there were a few shops and only two grocery stores the Orr siblings remember.
“My older brothers used to play football in the middle of Highway 17," Sandra (Orr) Sherman told WMBF News.
“The road was like a bunch of shells. Oyster shells," her brother, Mike Orr, added.
Their sister, Wilhemina (Orr) Green, agreed. The three had eight other siblings, but they’ve worked at Frank’s and Frank’s Outback Restaurant for over 80 years combined. It’s a feat not many other sibling trios can claim.
Another feat not many people can claim is remembering when Frank’s and Frank’s Outback Restaurant was originally one of two grocery stores in the area.
“It was an old town country grocery store," Sherman explained.
It made the town what it was to the families who lived there.
“I remember Mr. Marlow walking around with his apron on, with his big cigar. That’s what I remember,” Green said, smiling.
“(The cigar) that he never lit, he just chewed on.” Sherman added.
“He had a big ole’ stand of roasted peanuts,” Orr recalled.
The trio remembered walking into Marlow’s Supermarket like it was yesterday. They said they were regulars, going in to get candy, among other things like produce and meats, and remember Salters McClary working there during their visits.
Fast forward to now, and Salters McClary is the owner of Frank’s Restaurant. Sherman said McClary worked at Marlow’s in the summers, stocking shelves and pumping gas. McClary opened the restaurant in the Marlow’s Supermarket building in 1988 when Marlow retired, and he named it ‘Frank’s’ in honor of him.
Sherman said McClary expanded the restaurant when they took over Marlow’s mother’s house behind the restaurant, and thus ‘Frank’s Outback’ was built.
“It’s the happening place you know, everybody comes here. It’s like the meet and greet of Pawleys Island,” Sherman said.
“It’s the party place,” Orr said with a smile.
Sherman is now the manager of Frank’s, Orr is the lead grill chef and Green is the longest-serving server.
“Actually September 1990 I started here as a bus person, and I was part-time. But I’ve done everything in this restaurant except own it. I was the first pizza chef," Sherman explained.
“I went to the Navy, I got out of the Navy and came here as a dishwasher. I worked for three months as a dishwasher and they asked me if I wanted to cook. And I said ‘Why not? It beats washing dishes,’ and I was here ever since," Orr said.
He said he came to the restaurant in 1995 and learned almost everything under executive chef Pierce Culliton. Culliton is still at the restaurant.
Green said she served seven years in the military. She came back to Pawleys Island in 1989, and started working at Frank’s in 1990.
“The first day you have to learn fast or you get left behind. I learned fast," Green said.
Green does most of the server training now.
“I love serving. I enjoy meeting new people and making them laugh most of all," Green said.
The Orr siblings also have an aunt and nephew who work at Frank’s. They said among their favorite memories are Green’s wedding and the New Year’s parties the restaurant used to host. Sherman said Frank’s is the only restaurant she knows of that once served lunch but had to change to dinner only because they were ‘too busy.’
The trio said they’ve served and cooked for celebrities like Dabo Swinney, Cyndi Lauper, members of Hootie and the Blowfish, Andie Macdowell and the late Cokie Roberts who they said ate at Frank’s all the time.