Wednesday, April 30, 2003

Moonlite Bar matriarch dead at 83

The Associated Press

OWENSBORO, Ky. - Catherine Bosley, who bought a tiny barbecue restaurant with her husband in 1963 and built it into Owensboro's famed Moonlite Bar-B-Q Inn, has died. She was 83.

Bosley and her husband, Hugh, bought what was then a tiny 14-year-old barbecue joint with 30 seats, including stools at the counter, for $50,000.

During the next 40 years, the Bosleys turned the Moonlite into Owensboro's best-known restaurant.

"The Moonlite is truly one of the anchors of Owensboro's tourism economy, and it has been for years," said Burley Phelan, executive director of the Owensboro-Daviess County Tourist Commission. "Wherever I go, people ask about the Moonlite and the Executive Inn."

Today, the restaurant seats 350 and serves more than 350,000 meals a year. Its annual sales are estimated at more than $5 million.

"She was the mastermind behind the Moonlite," said Anna Bivins, a lifelong friend.

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