New roadside diner offers ole time favorites

Published 8:46 am Tuesday, August 13, 2019

The old building located right off of 19E at Keenburg Road has a new tenant who has some great and tasty treats for travelers of that stretch of highway.

That new occupant is called OE’s Roadside Grill and the treats include pulled pork with a slight sweet but tangy barbeque accompaniment, hamburgers, hotdogs, and grilled cheese sandwiches. All items are made fresh to order and come with a side of fries and a drink. The pork sandwich also comes with baked beans and slaw.

Originally from West Virginia, Overdorf moved to the East Tennessee area where he worked as kitchen manager for the Carter County School System for 10 years. He also worked as a kitchen manager for Johnson City Schools, and as a supervisor in the Meals on Wheels program.

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Overdorf also attended then Johnson Bible College in Knoxville and serves as a minister in the Range community of Carter County.

The new restaurant came about when Overdorf learned that the ideal location on Keenburg Road was available and he decided to take advantage of the opportunity and take his love of cooking and make a business out of it.

“I have been doing barbeque for about five or six years with pulled pork and smoking my own meat, and doing that for family and friends for a few years,” said Overdorf. “Everybody has always been telling me, ‘you need to open your own place…you need to open your own place.’”

Overdorf said that while he expects his business to grow, he has no plans to open any more OE’s even if he outgrows his current building.

“I believe it is the personal touch that people like,” he said.

While OE’s is a roadside grill, it does have a small dining room for those wanting to eat in. The interior of the building has a retro feel that takes one back to the days where similar small mom and pops eateries dotted roadways across America.

OE’s Roadside Grill’s address is 269 Keenburg Road in Elizabethton and is open for business Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. More information can be obtained by calling during the business’s open hours at 423-609-1620.