NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Two months after a tornado ripped through central Arkansas, one North Little Rock business still sits in pieces.
“All that sweat equity and time that I put into it, and the money that we put into it, and to see it all for nothing, it is pretty emotional,” Jim Maxwell, owner of Dog Town Pizza said.
Maxwell’s business got hit during the March 31 tornado, ripping out walls and ceilings.
He and his wife had originally leased the space in 2022 and opened doors in November.
“We spent a lot of money, about 125,000 dollars in renovating the building to get it open,” Maxwell said.
In the moments after the tornado, Maxwell says he and his wife spent hours trying to wrap their head around the damage.
“It was just an overwhelming feeling of numbness,” Maxwell said.
Just as emotions started to fade, a storm strikes again.
“When we realized that the building was not insured and that everything that we had done was potentially at a loss, it really did start to sink in that we were in trouble,” Maxwell said.
The building had previously sat vacant for 10 years. Maxwell says the owner had cancelled the original insurance and didn’t inform the Maxwell’s upon signing the agreement.
“It’s devastating,” Maxwell said.
Left with few ideas and little cash, Maxwell wonders what he’ll do next, hoping soon the sun will shine again on a dream between the rubble.
“It was just going to be fun place to have for us for years to come,” Maxwell said.
The Maxwell’s say they’re focusing on trying to get the place cleaned up but are at a standstill with funds.