10936 Hwy AF

Mountain Grove, MO  65711

(Gps the location - 25 miles North of Mtn Grove)




 Summer Hours:


To the Customers, Family and Friends of  Beaver Creek:


The time has come for significant changes at Beaver Creek.  We have been operating a summer fish house in some form since the summer of 2008.  We have gained a lot of valuable learning experiences along the way, some good, some bad.  During the covid shut down, things changed for the whole world and what we knew as the normal has never seemed to be quite the same since.  That includes the paylake.  We quit offering fishing at the paylake during that time as well as cut back on our days of operation.  We were open 4 days a week for 13 years.  Wow, that was a lot of work folks!  My kids grew up at the paylake working inside the restaurant, filleting all the fish we cooked and kept the outside mowed and clean.  It was a 7 day a week job for us to be open 4 days a week.  I’m thankful we did all of that and I’m thankful my kids were trained all those years by my mom, Jane, and whether they wanted to or not, they learned how to work, be responsible, learned the value of money & how hard it is to earn and how to interact with people of all ages.  Those will be memories and skills they will forever have that they would otherwise never have known.  So thank you if you ever visited Beaver Creek during those first 13 years and were a part of that experience for us.  Fast forward to 2020.  I don’t have to explain what things were like, we all lived it.  We are still feeling the effects of that mess.  I can’t speak for everyone but for me, the “paylake” has not been the same since covid.  It has been a struggle to find help, to keep help, to afford help (as they should well be compensated for the work they do here).  It has been a struggle to order pretty much “everything” related to the food industry.  One week there is plenty and the next week there is none.  It is hard to run a business like that and is frustrating for customers to come out in the middle of no where to eat and we may or may not have what you came for.  The times have changed and it is harder for small mom and pops like ours to keep up.  There is a long list of reasons that we have decided to close this chapter of the summer fish fry.  I’m going to share that since a lot of folks wonder and don’t quite understand our decision.  My mother, Jane, has been the main individual responsible for the running of the paylake since we opened.  She is down here every day for deliveries, to check cooler temps, prep all that delicious food that we cook and bake all those desserts.  She has kept the place clean, organized and running the whole time.  Jane is getting a little older now and so is Leo and so am I.  My kids are all grown and married with kids of their own.  They also do not want to take over the summer fish house.  None of them.  They farm, have babies and work full time and cannot handle the restaurant during the summer.   I cannot do this without my mom and my three kids.  It is not possible and I could not hire enough help to replace any of them.  Food has become ridiculously expensive and there is no such thing as a simple cheaper meal anymore.  The fish house was always worth while for many reasons until covid hit.  Food prices are all over the places, wages have gone through the roof and the mental burn out is inevitable.   I feel that we have had a great run since 2008 during the summer and want to say thank you to everyone who has graced our door.  Not everyone loves this place and that’s ok, but for those that do, I’m sorry to close this chapter you have been so loyal to for many many years.  What’s next?


I really do not know.  We are exploring all of our options.  In the meantime, we are going to offer some form of our fish house menu like “all you can eat” Fish-Chicken-Shrimp at our Chef’s Tables throughout the summer.  We plan to also offer a few “Farm To Table” special dinners that will be by reservation only, like we did on Valentine’s day (we will post about those as they come up and explain how they will work).  We raise a lot of our own food and want to share that with people.  Farm to Table dinners will allow us to share some of what we grow, cook and enjoy with people that love a variety of food and a fun dinner experience.   We also plan to offer the facility to rent as a venue for parties, to weddings, to reunions and private events.  We will offer a variety of catering needs specific to your event needs.  This will be a work in progress on what we can offer and how this will work.  This summer we plan to spruce up the outside wedding venue and the landscaping to be able to offer bookings, for weddings, during the summer months of 2025.  We are navigating this blindly but are excited to change up our personal lives and spend our summers a little different than we have the past 18 years.  The steakhouse will continue to be open in the fall and winter months.  And for those that wonder why we don’t run the steakhouse all year round, well that would be because our kitchen cannot handle the amount of heat the chargriller gives off during the summer.  The kitchen was built to accommodate fryers not a large open flame chargriller at 500 degrees the whole time.  The hood and the AC does not work properly with that much heat during the summer.  Just wanted to explain that part.


I don’t know what the future holds for Beaver Creek, but for now, we will breathe, enjoy a summer off for the first time in 18 years, navigate this summer and figure out the rest as we go.  We will have the 8 Saturday’s worth of Chef’s tables this summer, a random Farm to Table with reservations this summer and will be available to cater your event or party this summer.  We will be back in September with the steakhouse.  I don’t know what weekend the steakhouse will start back yet, just watch on facebook for updates, special events, and special dinners throughout the summer.  We thank you for all the years of patronage each and every one of  you have given. We would never have made it this far if it weren’t for all of our customers.  This has been a tough decision to end the very concept we started with, but for every chapter you complete, you begin another.  I’m looking forward to the next chapter. 


Thank you


Leo and Becky Dowden