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Brewton ‘Donations Only’ restaurant named ‘nicest’ place in Alabama, finalist for national competition

Reader’s Digest has named Drexell & Honeybees Donations Only Restaurant in Brewton one of the “50 Nicest Places in America,” recognizing the south Alabama eatery for taking southern hospitality to a new level.

This third annual competition, according to a press release, is “a national crowd-sourced effort to uncover places where people are kind and treat each other with respect.” The “Nicest Places” search is Reader’s Digest’s attempt to help ease political and cultural divides in America.

One place is chosen from each state. This year, judges sorted through well over 1,000 nominees to choose the top 50.

Now, the general public will get to vote on which of the finalists will get a cover story in the November issue of Reader’s Digest magazine. Nine others will also be featured in this special publication.

Speaking on the process of selecting finalists, Reader’s Digest Editor-in-Chief Bruce Kelley said, “[W]e learned something amazing, which is that no matter what’s going on in the news or social media, the truth is that there’s goodness all around us. We hope these stories lift spirits and inspire all of us to be better neighbors, friends and family.”

Drexell & Honeybees Donations Only Restaurant, based on the merit of its inspirational story, is certainly a leading contender to garner additional recognition.

With a motto of “We Feed The Need,” the restaurant is owned and run by an Alabama couple: Lisa Thomas-McMillan and her husband, Freddie.

The restaurant’s submission for the competition began, “Whether you have a pocket full of money or are broke, you will always be welcome here. Chances are if you’re down on your luck, you’re likely to leave with more than just a warm meal as helping hands are willing to assist you with other needs.”

Running only on voluntary monetary and food donations, as well as volunteers to staff the place, the Brewton restaurant is “open four days a week for lunch, plus breakfast on Tuesdays and dinner on Fridays, and lives up to its name,” according to Reader’s Digest. They feed approximately 100 people per day.

Read the full-length submission for Drexell & Honeybees Donations Only Restaurant and Reader’s Digest’s finalist writeup here.

Last year, Clay County as a whole was named as Alabama’s “nicest place.”

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

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