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Photos by Samuel Hoffman | The Journal Gazette
Gary Chappell, owner of Chappell’s Coral Grill, is opening a new jazz club in Covington Plaza.

Seafood restaurateurs turn to jazz

Outfitted with a digital grand piano, All That Jazz will feature local artists Wednesday to Saturday.

– A popular Fort Wayne restaurant hopes patrons have an appetite for jazz.

Chappell’s Coral Grill today plans to open All That Jazz, a music venue and specialty bar that will occupy the former Covington Bar & Grill that closed in June. Owners Gary and Annrita Chappell are investing up to $200,000 at the new establishment.

“(Today) is a soft opening, really,” Gary Chappell said. “This will be a place for people to come and enjoy music, and it will be in a controlled sound environment so you won’t have to be yelling at the person next to you. I’m too old for that.”

A digital grand piano, dance floor, a bar, seating area, kitchen, bathroom and flooring are among the renovations.

“We pretty much gutted it and started from scratch,” Chappell said. “About the only thing we didn’t have to touch was the ceiling.”

All That Jazz will feature shared entrées and appetizers. For those with a bigger appetite, they may order food from Chappell’s, which specializes in seafood and steak. The combined establishment will span about 7,700 square feet.

The business will continue to lease space from Covington Plaza on West Jefferson Boulevard.

“We really think the music part will complement everything else,” Annrita Chappell said. “We will be having local artists to perform Wednesdays through Saturday, but we’ll be open weekdays except for Sunday for a time.”

The couple moved to southwest Fort Wayne three years ago, after 25 years on Broadway.

Gary Chappell said news about the new venue has already spread.

“We have private parties scheduled and we’re almost full for December,” he said.

Former Covington Bar owner Scott Steele could not be reached for comment.

pwyche@jg.net

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