Tebbetts Landmark Saved
Welcome to Jim's Country Store. You can find it beside the Katy Trail, in the heart of Tebbetts, a tiny town located between Jefferson City and Mokane.
"It's a kind of the bed and breakfast for Jefferson City," Jim Phillips, the Jim of Jim's Country Store, said.
Jim's is a stone's throw for locals. People walk and ride their bikes there, other visitors drop in from across the globe.
"I've had them from Japan, England, Australia, virtually from every state," Phillips said.
It's the diversity of guests that makes Jim's a Tebbetts treasure. When visitors come in from the Katy Trail they record their trip in a log book. It's full of stories and memories of their visits.
"We can bore you to death with pictures..stories that we've heard," Phillips said.
Come in to Jim's and you can grab a smile, a seat, a soda or a song. Jim has lots of songs.
"He's gotten better, he's stayed out until four in the morning practicing [karaoke]," Linda McMillan said.
Jim does more than just sing though. He's also an important piece of this community's puzzle. Jim and others saved a building by the Katy Trail that used to be part of the Tebbetts Railroad.
"It was the last thing in Tebbetts that belonged to the railroad. We wanted to keep a little history here," Phillips said.
Residents adopted the building from the Department of Natural Resources. It's now part of a community park.
"We mow quite a bit..we plant flowers and trees," Phillips said.
They're in the process of raising enough money to buy insurance for things like playground equipment. That way kids will be playing in a place community members like Jim worked hard to create. And while hikers on the Katy Trail are playing outside, you can be sure Jim and his crew will be playing their favorite song...
"If you can't sing, we don't care. Just come out here to have a good time."
Waiting for the next stranger, the next story, and the next friendly face.
When Jim's not busy he collects model T cars, and he's been known to give a few rides in them to visitors from the Katy Trail.