Widow Fletcher's Enjoys Taste of Fame

By Scott E. Kenney, Atlantic News Staff Writer

Atlantic News, Friday, March 3, 2006,

[The following article is courtesy of Atlantic News.]

TRAVEL ON OVER -- The Widow Fletecher's Tavern owner Parker Ryan (right) was interviewed by Taste of America host Mark DeCarlo (left) for the Travel Channel.
[Atlantic News Courtesy Photo]

HAMPTON -- A local dining favorite is soon to be on television.

On Tuesday, March 7, at 8 p.m., the Widow Fletcher's Tavern will be featured on the Travel Channel's "Taste of America with Mark DeCarlo."

A film crew from the Travel Channel visited the restaurant to film a segment for its show at the end of September.

Widow's owner, Parker Ryan said he was contacted by the channel because they were interested in filming a segment on the tavern's chicken pot pie as well as the Royal Society Bridge Club.

"The club is a group of local business people that have been meeting here for close to 20 years," said Ryan. "We don't really play Bridge."

What the club does do, according to Ryan, is involve itself in charitable and civic-minded events throughout the town.

Ryan said his establishment has been on television more than once, often because of the Bridge Club's more notable members. The Widow's television debut was during a primary eve party held at the location in honor of presidential hopeful and Royal Bridge Club member Dick Gephardt in 1988.

Gephardt is on a long and distinguished list of members that includes Congressman Pat Kennedy, political activist and "Saturday Night Live" funnyman Al Franken, Boston Bruins' stars Derrick Sanderson and Rick Middleton, and even former vice-president and inventor of the Internet, Al Gore. "Taste of America's" host, Mark DeCarlo, even managed to get himself inducted into the club during his visit to the tavern.

The segment will also focus on the Widow's chicken pot pie, a tavern staple since its opening 23 years ago. Ryan said Widow's fit the match of what the Travel Channel was looking for, "a restaurant with English ties with hearty, stick-to-your-ribs foods."

He added that it was a pleasure filming for the show.

"It was just a lot of fun to have them here and have a chance to profile a well-meaning, active group," he said. "The people from the Travel Channel were great."

Along with Widow Fletcher's, the town of Hampton will also be featured as part of the show.

"We're excited to be featured," said Ryan.

Once the show has aired, it will run several times during the remainder of the week. Check local listings for details.