I met Craig Noone in 2009 on Facebook. He had started a group called “Save the Sun-N-Sand!”. I knew we would be friends. Rachel and I were living in Dallas at the time, and he had just moved back to Jackson from there. He was in the midst of starting up this little restaurant venture he called Parlor Market. We would occasionally grab lunch when I was in town, and his passion for the city was contagious. It’s not easy to open a restaurant, but he did it. And, he did it right.

Several months before the restaurant was complete (Summer 2010), Arthur Jones and I threw a cookout at his house. We invited Craig. He and two of his chef imports from Dallas, Jesse Houston and Ryan Bell, showed up with an enormous slab of pork belly. They stuck it in the oven and left for several hours. Upon their return, they kicked everyone out of the kitchen and proceeded to make what would become one of Parlor Market’s most popular dishes, Pork Belly Sliders. There must have been at least 100. (I know I had at least 3!).

So, before I get on with all of the seemingly mundane tasks of life for the day, I just wanted to say thank you.

For introducing so many of us to the beauty of pork belly and to Prohibition-era cocktails and for giving people a reason to go Downtown again…

For bringing new passion and new friends to the city…

For following your dreams and awaking the dreams in others…

For changing the food and restaurant scene in Jackson and in Mississippi…

For being a good friend, a good chef, and one hell of an awesome guy…

And, for bringing around a baseball-sized scallop last night for all of us to see…

Craig, I thank you…we all thank you. And, I’m glad I got to see you one last time. We’ll miss you, buddy.

Chris Meyers and Rachel Jarman are Fondren residents and young progressive professionals in their respective fields. Follow them on Twitter at @siennabox and @rsjarman and read their blog at RegionalDifferences.com #noone

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