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What better way to kick off our Location in the Limelight series than to feature the location where it all began – The ORIGINAL Woody’s Bar-B-Q in Jacksonville? Situated at 1638 University Boulevard South in the heart of “The Bold New City of the South,” this iconic location first opened in the Fall of 1980. With its signature red siding, black trim and a nearly ever-present aroma of slow-smoked BBQ, it has played host to countless guests and a large number of spare rib eating contests over the last 40+ years. When it first opened its doors, the Combination Dinner – which featured sliced pork, spare ribs, and BBQ chicken plus French fries, cole slaw and garlic toast – was the highest price item at just $4.85. Most menu items were south of $5, with many of the most popular dishes under $2. A pork sandwich with fries was $1.90, a cup of Brunswick stew as $.85 and a cup of fresh homemade banana pudding was just $.75. Even though a lot has changed since they first opened their first restaurant – including the prices, company co-founders, Woody Mills and Yolanda Mills-Mawman, continue to have a regular presence at the ORIGINAL location. In the four decades since they first opened their doors in Jacksonville, their original vision has expanded to include four corporate locations and 11 franchise locations.

“Jacksonville was a natural choice for us because I grew up here and have a lot of friends and family ties here,” said Woody, CEO of the classic Southern BBQ chain. “We chose the University Boulevard site because it was affordable and set at a busy intersection. Practical choices aside, it turns out it was an excellent pick because we’re still here and going strong after 41 years. That’s hard to beat! We are so thankful to our patrons in and around Jacksonville for their ongoing support of our flagship Woody’s Bar-B-Q location.”

In addition to slow-smoked BBQ and comfort food-inspired side dishes – many of which were conceived by Woody’s mother, Grace – The ORIGINAL Woody’s Bar-B-Q also features a kitschy interior, a warm and welcoming atmosphere and service with a smile from a well-seasoned staff in its dining room. To meet the needs of today’s patrons, it also offers online ordering, takeout orders, curbside pickup and delivery through Doordash. Each week, patrons are invited to enjoy All You Care to Eat Bar-B-Q Chicken Sundays and families are welcome to make a new tradition out of Kids Eat Free Mondays. And for events of virtually any size, The ORIGINAL Woody’s Bar-B-Q is proud to offer catering. With community at the heart of its success, the restaurant is proud to show its support for local uniformed officers, hospital workers, members of the military and senior citizens with discounts.

“The ORIGINAL Woody’s Bar-B-Q will always be at the heart of everything we do as a company,” said Yolanda, President and COO of the popular Florida-based BBQ franchise. “Many of our franchisees were trained there. Over the years, we tested many of our limited time offers there. We’ve had countless anniversary celebrations there to benefit local nonprofits. And – most importantly – it’s the spot where many patrons tried our one-of-a-kind BBQ for the first time. It’s a landmark among Jacksonville residents and we look forward to continuing to welcome new fans into the fold for years to come.”

To learn more about The ORIGINAL Woody’s Bar-B-Q in Jacksonville, visit the location webpage at and connect with them on Facebook! Hungry? View their menu and place your order by calling (904) 721-8836. Planning to dine in? Restaurant hours are Wednesday – Saturday: 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Sunday – Tuesday: 11:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Placing a catering order? Call the catering hotline to design your event menu at (904) 296-6948.

KB 12/27/21