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Coleman ’ s Corner reopens , serving up heaping helpings of fruits of the spirit

Story and Photos by LEAH BETHEA

Coleman ’ s Corner in Tennille is known for its traditional Southern favorites like fried chicken , macaroni and cheese and collard greens , but even more important to the owners is the food they prepare for the soul .

Clifford Coleman watched his parents , Booker T . and Mary , serve up a special kind of comfort food for most of his life .
Their story begins more than a decade ago when his mother had a vision for the building her husband owned at 340 Smith St . in Tennille . The rundown building had been used for storage and needed plenty of repairs , but Mary saw its potential as a place for good food and fellowship in a community she loved .
“ With her own hands , she painted , she pulled nails , she did whatever she needed to do to get it open , and it really transformed the building inside and outside ,” Clifford recalls . “ She did it with the help of family members and myself and my dad . He really did a lot to ensure that she opened this , and she did it all on her own . It was just her passion , and it really flourished .”
The restaurant originally opened back in 2007 and was a popular local gathering spot . But due to health concerns of Booker T . and Mary , Coleman ’ s Corner was forced to close its doors in 2017 . Clifford , an educator by profession , was teaching science at Washington County High School at the time , but he had a dream of reopening the business that his parents loved so dearly .
“ When they closed , it was my goal to reopen ,” he says .