For years Darrell and Scott Draper dreamed of making pizzas together. Darrell, the tenacious businessman, was determined to make that happen.
The story begins in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where Darrell moved to for a short while after he retired. He had a small brick oven in his home that he used to make wood fired pizzas. Darrell later sold his house to move back to Indiana, planning to bring the oven with him, but as it was being moved out of his home, the oven was accidentally reduced to a pile of rubble. Darrell was determined to get another oven and Scott found one on eBay. Darrell bought the oven and Scott drove to Boston to bring the 8000 pound brick oven from Boston back to Indiana.
Darrell started making pizzas for the locals and his neighbors and would call Scott, who was now living in Florida, to get help on how to make them. But over time, Darrell would decide that maybe making pizzas wasn’t something he wanted to do after all.
It was Tracy, Darrell’s wife and partner, who would convince him otherwise. It was her idea to push things forward. She reminded Darrell of his dream and how he would bring pizza to Tracy’s three girls, Kamryn, Morgan and Sam and joke with them about how they could come work for him when he opened his pizza place.
Small Town, big Deal
Tracy and Darrell moved the oven into Darrell’s lot at the corner of State Road 36 and Walnut Street in Mt. Summit, Indiana. Turning it into a small 5-seat carryout place to sell their pizzas. They took a few pictures and sent them to Scott asking him when he was coming. A 27 hour bus ride from Florida to Indiana brought a longtime dream to reality and on November 9th 2016, 1000º Wood Fired Pizza was born.
That small 5-seater with a handful pizzas, is now a full menu, a dining room and a patio for the summer months. Amazing ingredients, excellent food coupled with fantastic customer service have provided the small town of Mt. Summit with a wonderful dining experience. This small pizza place is changing the landscape of the town and the community. That’s something the Draper family is most proud of. And people are coming from miles around to be a part of it.
Some candid shots from our staff, customers and friends of 1000º
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