Greg and Cari Day, owners of Macky's Grill, returned exhausted Tuesday evening from a trip to the Valley.
Liquor license in-hand for their restaurant's new location, the couple planned to work all night moving furniture and equipment from the old restaurant at South Beeline to Sawmill Crossing.
"It was as cool as cool can be. The employees closed the restaurant at 2 p.m. and moved everything over here by 6 p.m.," Cari said. She had tears in her eyes.
"As soon as we closed the doors we got down and dirty. We all just worked together," server Linnea Leas said.
"Wow! We just didn't expect what they did at all. We have awesome employees. It sure took a load off us," Greg said.
Leas and wait supervisor Pauli Moore are looking forward to the three times bigger wait station -- where the kitchen staff places customers' food and drink orders.
"We were crammed in our old one," Leas said.
In the old location, the staff worked out of refrigerators. Now, the large walk-in freezer will make food storage and inventory easier.
All of the staff have moved over, including Kristy Ulmer, Macky's manager for the past six years.
"It's like Kristy is one of us, but she works harder," Leas added.
Ulmer was on an elk hunt when her crew loaded the trucks Dec. 4. The extra mile their employees went meant the Days will reopen Macky's Dec. 8.
"We will open Saturday at 10 a.m. and stay open until whenever the customers quit coming in," Cari Day said.
The move to the 3,000 square-foot, custom-designed location has been more than a year in the offing.
The Days announced in Oct. 2006 that Macky's would re-open for its tenth anniversary Jan. 2007.
"We have been two weeks from opening ever since," Cari said.
Being short-handed for help the first six months of the year slowed things down.
"We underestimated what it would take. It has turned into a funny story everyone gets a kick out of," Greg said.
"People always ask, ‘was it the town,' but the town, especially lately, has been very cooperative and the people at Sawmill have been very supportive," he added.
The Days chose the new location after polling weekend customers.
"Ninety-five percent of people did not find us by driving by," Cari said.
Greg made the booths. He carved the Western scenes that ran along the windows in the old building and they are now part of the booths in the new building. He also made some headrests with dried saguaro cactus ribs.
Customers who worried about Macky's losing its "hometown feel" should not fear, Cari said.
The burgers that have won Macky's numerous "Best of Payson" awards, including the Cowboy Melt and the Duke Burger, are still on the menu, as are the "fallin' off the bone tender" barbecue pork ribs.
Cajun Chicken Pasta, a saucy seafood platter and an appetizer of tempura-battered jalapeño slices and onion straws she named the Texas Two Step are new to the menu.
The "light and lovin' it" thumbs-up icon on the new menu indicates the item is for customers watching their waistlines.
The Days plans heading into 2008?
"We are excited to team up with the movie theater and eventually plan to do a dinner-and-a-movie coupon," Cari said.