If you’re from Campbell County, you’ve driven by it countless times.
4229 Mary Ingles Highway in Silver Grove on the banks of the Ohio River, located just south of Winters Lane on the opposite side of the road and down a ways from the Combs Hehl bridge and Fort Thomas. If you’re observant enough, you can peer through the entry point which sits under the railroad crossing, which has been covered in mural and graffiti art.
Brent’s Landing, a new venture, is soon to open on the banks of a peaceful and idyllic setting, directly across from Coney Island and Riverbend across the Ohio River.
Father and son owners, Ric and Zac Rohlfer and their wives, Vicki and Kristi, describe the business as a family-owned grill that sits on the Ohio River bank serving all of your favorites including burgers, hot dogs, soft-pretzels, ice cream and floats.
|Barre3 Ft. Thomas located in the Fort Thomas Plaza.|
For the entire Rohlfer family, clearing out the area and getting it to the state it currently sits has been a labor of love.
“I convinced my family to buy this property about four years ago and for the first few years we didn’t know exactly what we were going to do,” said Zac. “I knew the property was unique and that it could be something really special, so I really wanted to acquire it. When we did, it was just a matter of some good old family bonding.”
The Rohlfers began clearing the property out two and a half years ago, removing refuse and debris, clearing the river banks and landscaping the area to give it the perfect amount of sun and shade. They hand-moved one hundred tons of rock to create a sturdy ground level that will provide enough parking on the riverbanks and picnic table seating. There will be areas to tie up if you have a boat and if you catch it right, listen to the music echo off the riverbanks from Riverbend.
“Our family wanted to make this beautiful piece of riverfront property a place that others could come and enjoy,” said Ric. “When you come to Brent’s Landing, whether by car or boat, you’ll get a great meal with a relaxing view on the shady river bank. If there isn’t music, we enjoy the sounds of the river just as much and hope you do, too!”
|John P. Laughead, owner of Brent Ferry.For many years our current location was a ferry landing for passengers to get to Coney Island from the Kentucky side of the river. The ferry shut down with the opening of the I275 Combs Hehl Bridge.|
|An elephant enters the Ohio River in Brent, Kentucky in 1909.|
The site itself has some rich history behind it. Zac said recently locals are familiar with the area and know it as a shady area to fish, but the name comes from when the area the property sits, which was known as Brent, Kentucky. For many years the location was a ferry landing for passengers to get to Coney Island from the Kentucky side of the river. The ferry shut down with the opening of the I-275 Combs Hehl Bridge.
Just down from Brent’s Landing was a railroad station, which is now gone. Local writer and artist Harlan Hubbard, who’s house in Fort Thomas is now on the National Register of Historic Places, lived in Brent in the 1940’s. The area was the start of his journey down the Ohio River to New Orleans, which is documented in his book Shantyboat. Many of his paintings were also inspired by the area of Brent.
Zac lights up when he talks about the property. You can tell the amount of pride both men have when talking of its transformation.
“I’ll put our burgers up against anyone’s,” said Zac, who noted that they’ll be hand-ground. “We’re just really excited to share our project with Greater Cincinnati.”
They are looking to hire for seasonal hours now: Thursday 4:30 to 9 p.m., Friday 4:30 to 11 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (for now). If you're interested in working or for more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.