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Hungry Harry's BBQ in Land O' Lakes treats employees and customers like close family

Airline pilots use Harry's patriotic roof as a beacon
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Posted at 4:55 AM, Jun 11, 2021

LAND O' LAKES, Fla. — Harry Wright has been the BBQ king of Land O' Lakes for 36 years.

It's not always easy at the top.

"Two days after everybody agrees on religion and politics, they'll agree on barbecue!" says Wright, the owner of Hungry Harry's BBQ. "Everyone has an opinion on barbecue!"

Harry's opinion is one that definitely matters.

His restaurant's oak-smoked burnt ends and chicken, plus ginormous sandwiches like the epic Smokehouse (brisket, pulled pork, ham, bacon and cole slaw) are the stuff of local legend.

The roof of Hungry Harry's is almost as famous as the food. It's a giant American flag, a design he decided on a few days after 9/11.

Airline pilots have told him they use the landmark's rooftop as a beacon when landing at Tampa International Airport.

But Harry and son-in-law Chad Hudson don't run this beloved landmark on the shores of Lake Padgett for fortune and glory.

They do it for "family." And when they say "family," they mean both employees and loyal customers. They're now hiring, and serving, three generations of loved ones.

"We just want to thank our employees and our customers," Wright says. "Their loyalty is the only thing that got us through (the pandemic)."

Hungry Harry's is all about that communal love. After hurricanes ravaged the area, the restaurant fed thousands of families in need.

"Service is what matters most," Harry says.

For more on Hungry Harry's BBQ, click here.