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Paula Deen restaurant closes

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 07:32 p.m. HST, Apr 03, 2014

SAVANNAH, Ga. » A wildly popular Georgia restaurant at the center of a lawsuit that left the reputation of famed Southern celebrity cook Paula Deen in shambles has reportedly closed.

Uncle Bubba's Seafood & Oyster House announced the closure Thursday on its Facebook page, The Savannah Morning News and WSAV television reported.

"Thank you for 10 great years. Uncle Bubba's is now closed," the Facebook message said.

Deen's brother, restaurant operator Bubba Hiers, decided to shut the eatery's doors "in order to explore development options for the waterfront property on which the restaurant is located," the reports said, quoting a statement from the Key Group public relations and marketing company. "At this point, no specific plans have been announced," the statement said.

The closure was effective as of Thursday, and employees will be provided with severance pay and assistance looking for new jobs, the statement said.

Deen co-owned the restaurant with Hiers, who oversaw daily operations. Former employee Lisa Jackson sued them both in 2012, saying she worked in an environment rife with racial slurs and sexual innuendo during her five years as manager of the restaurant.

The case got little attention outside Savannah until Deen herself was questioned under oath in a legal deposition. A transcript filed with the court the following month showed Deen acknowledged using racial slurs in the past. When an attorney asked if she had ever used the N-word, Deen replied: "Yes, of course." She also added, "It's been a very long time."

Within a few days, the Food Network said it would not renew Deen's contract and yanked her shows off the air. Smithfield Foods, the pork producer that paid Deen as a celebrity endorser, dropped her soon after. Retailers including Wal-Mart and Target said they would no longer sell Deen's products, and publisher Ballantine scuttled plans for a cookbook even though it was the No. 1 seller on Amazon.

A federal judge dismissed the lawsuit last year after lawyers reached a deal.

This year, Deen has attempted to make a comeback, staging public cooking demonstrations and announcing plans for a new restaurant in Tennessee.

In February she announced that private investment firm Najafi Companies was investing $75 million to $100 million to help her bounce back, and that as part of the deal, she was launching an umbrella company, Paula Deen Ventures, to oversee her restaurants, cookbooks and product endorsements.

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scooters wrote:
Give her a break!
on April 3,2014 | 08:55PM
2NDC wrote:
Just like she gave the "miggers" that worked for her over the years?
on April 3,2014 | 09:10PM
HAJAA1 wrote:
Good. True blood racist. Period. You're gullible if you believe otherwise.
on April 3,2014 | 11:36PM
inverse wrote:
Paula Deen racist? That's like saying Faye Hanohano is a racist.
on April 4,2014 | 02:39AM
busterb wrote:
I think Hanohano is a little more fair, she hates everyone equally.
on April 4,2014 | 07:28AM
bumba wrote:
Hanohano's counterpart.
on April 4,2014 | 02:34AM
gofigga wrote:
I'm so glad that in Hawaii we have words such as "Popolo" and "Pa'ele"! We also have terms such as "Pake", "Buddahhead", "Yobo", "Bukbuk", and of course "Haole". With the exception of the last one, these terms are not derogatory, they are merely used to point out a particular individual! Lucky we live Hawaii!
on April 4,2014 | 03:48AM
lokela wrote:
Hopefully new attitudes arise from this. Lessons learned.
on April 4,2014 | 06:11AM
honupono wrote:
She looks like miss piggy
on April 4,2014 | 06:31AM
serious wrote:
It's from the butter she eats by the pound!
on April 4,2014 | 06:38AM
lee1957 wrote:
I'm sure alot of posters here have a face made for radio.
on April 4,2014 | 11:32AM
hawaiikone wrote:
A lot of posters here apparently wouldn't have any problem throwing that first stone.
on April 4,2014 | 06:32AM
Anonymous wrote:
First? Seems like plenty have already been thrown. Fifteen yard penalty for piling on, maybe.
on April 4,2014 | 06:43AM
Rickyboy wrote:
Sticks and stones bla bla bla.....
on April 4,2014 | 07:51AM
cojef wrote:
Sad of how the social media works to destroy individual's character for mistakes made in the past. How easy to be critical of others, yet when we look into our own hearts, who is without sin? Pray for her financial recovery.
on April 4,2014 | 08:59AM
inverse wrote:
Whats the problem, the end result is the public has a major influence on business, our political leaders and their decisions, etc and that is how is SHOULD be. The Deen story is that she grew up at a time and culture where African Americans were second class citizens and should return to slavery. She was traumatized early in her life when an African American held her and others at gunpoint for a robbery or something. Unfortunately Deen in her own words, could not see past skin color and believed ALL blacks are inherently like the one who robbed her. She built a successful food product company, however along the way as got bigger and bigger, she accepted and/or ignored the racist culture beyond her personal life and let he spill into one of her commercial ventures co-ran by her brother who let se xual harassment and racism permeate her business. In public interviews she acted so bizarre and defiance similar to Faye Hanohano locally. However the public spoke out and despite Fox news attempt to rehabilitate her, she had to close her restaurant. Don't agree with Obama and his politics in creating a socialist nation, however for him to become President of the US and then be re-elected, the one thing good that has occurred is that he has helped to shape the social and business climate in this nation that racism will NOT be tolerated. AJA's know that all too well in the 1940's during WW2. If Romney got that point as well and understood that type of optics he would have listened to Huckabee and Trump and chosen Rubio as his running mate and maybe would have had a better chance of getting elected. It was too little too late for him to recently release a private family photo of an African American kid who was adopted by one of his daughters (or whatever) and sitting on his lap. Don't worry, Deen will not starve and continue to live in the life of luxury, just not as rich as someone like Oprah.
on April 4,2014 | 10:25AM
handsomeguy wrote:
She stinks.
on April 4,2014 | 10:06AM
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