Restaurant owner's 'on the wall' idea reels in customers

Restaurant owner makes 'splash' with decor

Dallas restaurateur Shannon Wynne enjoys making a splash whenever he opens a new restaurant. Which is what drew former WFAA reporter Mike Castellucci to the Flying Fish 12 years ago.

In that original report, Castellucci explained how Shannon wanted to see if anyone would like to store their unwanted "Big Mouth Billy Bass" on his wall.

His most "off the wall" idea is now what's on his wall.

“It’s not normal, I’ll have to admit,” Shannon said.

Shannon, an avid fisherman himself, has been gifted nearly a dozen of the once-famous Big Mouth Billy Bass.

“'Take Me to the River' still haunts me in my dreams,” Shannon said, referencing the infamous song Billy Bass sings.

It also broke his heart to know Big Mouth Billy Bass everywhere were locked in an attic, drowning in dust.

“Why do we treat ‘em that way? It shouldn’t be that way,” he said.

So he put his on the wall and offered a free dinner to anyone else willing to give theirs up for adoption.

“We wanted to make sure every Billy Bass has a home,” he said.

It’s been quite the catch.

When Castellucci came in 2005, Big Mouth Billy Bass barely filled up one wall. Today they’re on that wall, every other wall -- and even the ceiling.

However, the Big Mouth Billy Bass don’t have batteries.

“The music, it would go on and on and on,” Shannon said. “It got old.”

But they do have new life.

Still, Shannon says there’s an ocean’s worth of Big Mouth Billy Bass ready to be rescued.

“Right now, in attics all across Dallas, Fort Worth -- there are Billy Basses waiting for a home,” he said.

And he will continue offering it, even though his customers know he has bigger fish to fry.

© 2017 WFAA-TV


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