Having been open for for almost 4 months, one of the things that has struck me more than anything else is how important our building has been in the lives of Matthews residents. The Portrait Gallery Restaurant and Bar is part of a building in the historic downtown area of Matthews, a building that has been around for more than a hundred years. During that time it has housed a multitude of local businesses, including a barber shop, a fish shop, a general store, a cafe and most recently of course a photography studio, hence the restaurant name. I have become used to customers coming in and telling us about having their wedding photos, children’s christening photos, prom photos and many other milestone events immortalized at what is now our restaurant and bar. This weekend we had a gentleman in, who told us the story of his repair shop, which was housed in the building before it became a photography studio. It was so interesting hearing how it was configured and some of the stories around the building at that time. We are privileged to have such a great building, in such a welcoming community, to call home. The camera phone photos people take of our food and decor may not be at the standard of those taken by the previous owner, but they do add to the historical record of this great location. I look forward to combining the last two businesses which have occupied this site, when my youngest daughter has her prom dinner at the restaurant. Hopefully we will have some photographs that show this great location at its best, for future generations to view.