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Smuggler’s Brings New Seafood & Sushi Concept to Port Charlotte

August 8, 2014


John Hall’s Goal Post Grill closes it’s doors for a total renovation to unveil Smuggler’s Grille -  a full service seafood restaurant “With an Italian Flair”.

Port Charlotte, FL (August 8, 2014) – John Hall’s Goal Post Grill will close it’s doors on August 17th to make way for the latest culinary concept from Smuggler’s Enterprises, Inc. Total indoor and outdoor renovations will take place until mid-November when the simply stated, Smuggler’s Grille, will open their doors.

After recently purchasing the property, Smuggler’s Enterprises, Inc., conducted an in-depth analysis to determine what kind of dining concept was needed and well-suited for the local demographic. Born was the eclectic concept of a quality, full-service restaurant offering fresh seafood, sushi and steaks “with an Italian flair”. Complementing this concept will be Nick Petrilli as the Executive Chef and Tommy Powers as the General Manager.

Petrilli’s extensive background includes working under the Food Network’s Michael Chiarello at his acclaimed Napa Valley restaurants, Tra Vigne and Bottega, as well as, opening his own masterpiece, Gozo, in Denver this year. Petrilli’s experience in prominently Italian kitchens laid the groundwork for the “Italian Flair” Smuggler’s Grille will incorporate. “I’m very excited to be back in the area with family,” voiced Petrilli. “I was in Napa Valley for 16 years so it’s good to be home. Everything happens for a reason and this seems to be a win win for everyone.”

Powers resume is just as exciting. Having waited on President George Bush frequently in his role as Assistant Beverage Manager at the Colony Hotel in Kennebunkport, Maine, Powers made his way down to their sister property in Delray Beach for seven years and then on to manage multiple, local restaurants in Covington, GA. Ironically enough, Powers and Petrilli went to high school together in Long Island, NY, and were teammates on their baseball team.

“Smuggler’s Restaurants is proud to announce its partnership with two talented young men. The creation of a local seafood restaurant ‘with an Italian flair’ will be a great concept,” attests Ron Evans, President and CEO of Smuggler’s Enterprises, Inc.

The overhaul will touch all aspects of the restaurant. The kitchen will gain new, modern equipment, while the indoor decor will give off a coastal Italian vibe. A sushi bar will be built inside and the indoor and outdoor bars will receive a clean, revitalized update. Keeping the overall theme casual, the bars will portray a friendly vibe with numerous TVs to showcase sporting events. As November approaches, a grand opening event will be planned for the community.

Please send press inquiries to

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August 16, 2014 – 5th Anniversary Crab Fest Party at Laishley Crab House

August 2, 2014

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Laishley Crab House and Smugglers Enterprises, Inc. are excited to celebrate the 5th Anniversary of the Crab House on August 16th, 2014.

After Hurricane Charley severely damaged most of the Punta Gorda waterfront, a group of local businessmen working together as Smugglers Enterprises created a concept for a new waterfront dining location in the heart of Punta Gorda. In 2009 their concept became a reality as the Laishley Crab House opened at the newly renovated Laishley Park Municipal Marina.

Focusing on fresh seafood, flown-in crabs from Alaska, an exciting sushi bar, and great steaks, the Laishley Crab House has become the premier waterfront dining location in Charlotte County. The interior of the Crab House is no less remarkable as rustic hand cut boards and hundreds of fish, animal, and bird carvings adorn the posts, mantles, and beams of the main bar area.

5 years later the Laishley Crab House still remains the dining destination on Punta Gorda’s waterfront. In celebration of the 5 year anniversary, the Crab House is throwing a party! Actually a Crab-Fest and Street Party, to be held adjacent to the restaurant in the Laishley Park Courtyard and on Laishley Court on August 16th, 2014.

The “Crab-Fest” will feature a great selection of seafood including Alaskan King Crab, Snow Crab, Shrimp, Scallops, Mahi-Mahi, Southern Fried Catfish, and special dishes such as a Seafood Boil and Seafood Rice. Fresh Sushi will also be available. In addition to the great food and beverages available, there will also be a vendor area with lots of great shopping options. Throughout the day there will be raffles with all of the proceeds earmarked for the Vietnam Wall Memorial Fund for the Laishley Park Memorial Wall.

The festivities will kick off at 3:00pm with the REEL Ladies Fishing Tournament Weigh-In, which benefits the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Live Music begins at 3:30pm with Jersey Vic, The Jack Michael Band takes the stage at 5:30 with an acoustic show, and then Cecilia Lauren and the Ocoee River Band will headline the night with a great performance at 8:00pm. There will be a special appearance by the Jack Daniels Honey Girls from 7:00 to 9:00 with free sampling and lots of giveaways!

For more information regarding the Crab-Fest, 5th Anniversary Celebration of the Laishley Crab House please call 941.637.5953 or click on the flyer below.


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Letter from Philip F. Wilson – 2014 Riley Award Winner

August 1, 2014

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The below thank you letter was received from our 2014 Riley Award winner, Philip F. Wilson.


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Letter to Smuggler’s from Florida Congressman Tom Rooney

July 23, 2014

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Letter to Smuggler’s from Florida Governor Rick Scott

June 25, 2014

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Smuggler’s received the following letter from Governor Rick Scott in recognition of being one of only 23 food service establishments in the state to have no safety or sanitation violations. We are very pleased to receive this recognition and thank our employees and managers for all of their hard work that made this recognition possible.


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2013 Haunting on the Harbor

October 14, 2013


Smuggler’s Events is bringing the annual Haunting on the Harbor back bigger and better for 2013. The Halloween Festival will be October 25-27 with a Haunted House Encore on October 30-31.  Please visit for full details!


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12th Annual Flatsmasters Redfish Series Championship, October 12-13, 2013

October 7, 2013

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PRESS RELEASE – October 7, 2013
The 12th Annual Flatsmasters Redfish Series Championship will be held this weekend. October 12-13, 2013 at the Laishley Crab House in Punta Gorda.
This weekend’s tournament is the culmination of 6 qualifying events that began back in March.  Teams of up to 3 anglers competed in qualifying events earning cash prizes and Power Pole Team of the Year Points towards earning the opportunity to compete in the Championship Tournament.  In each qualifying event, teams were challenged with catching, weighing, and releasing two legal redfish with the heaviest 2 fish total being the winner.
The Flatsmasters Championship will be a two day tournament with all qualified teams fishing both days.  Teams will enter two legal redfish each day for a combined four redfish total.  The heaviest weight over the 2 days will be crowned 2013 Flatsmasters Champions and take home the grand prize of a 2014 Hewes Redfisher 18 flats boat with Yamaha F115 four stroke outboard valued at $30,000!
On both Saturday and Sunday, teams will leave Laishley Park City Marina at safelight or approximately 7:10am and the Weigh-In festivities will begin at 3:30pm on the Laishley Crab House stage, The Awards Ceremony will be held immediately after the Weigh-In concludes on Sunday.The public is invited to come and cheer on their favorite teams.
The Flatsmasters Series has been the benchmark for redfish tournaments in Florida for over a decade.  With an emphasis on conservation, the Flatsmasters Series has innovated many of the conservation practices used to ensure a continued healthy fishery.  These include water filled carry bags, oxygen release tanks, fish runners, and a release boat to carry redfish back into the harbor.
The 2013 Flatsmasters Series is presented by Maverick Boat Co, Yamaha Outboards, Ingman Marine, Coors Light, Absolut Vodka, Mosaic, Don Gasgarth’s Charlotte County Ford, Power Pole, Grande Air Services, Sun Newspapers, RedZone Apparel, Rapid Graphix, Laishley Marine, WaterLine Magazine, J & C Drydock Marine, Turbo Prop, Integrity Employee Leasing, Laishley Crab House, Bob’s Machine Shop, and Roy’s Trailer Country.
For more information regarding the Flatsmasters Series, visit
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Harpoon Harry’s Raises the Bar with New Nightlife Renovations

September 18, 2013

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For Immediate Release
Punta Gorda, FL
(September 18, 2013)

Harpoon Harry’s has been a standout on the Punta Gorda waterfront restaurant scene for twenty years, widely known for its resolute commitment to quality food, quality service, in a clean and maintained environment. Inside in the relaxed dining room or outdoors on the spacious waterfront deck overlooking Charlotte Harbor, guests enjoy carefully selected beers, wines, and spirits as well as seasonal fresh fare.

In an effort to create a much needed outlet for the nightlife of SW Florida, Harpoon’s is rolling out the red carpet for a spectacular opening weekend for the companies latest venture – a newly renovated and re-imagined Harpoon Harry’s. Maximizing the same treasured experiences customers have loved for over twenty years, combined with a new modern twist!

Upon entering the newly renovated restaurant, guests will descend into the open-air space designed to offer a unique waterfront atmosphere that will engage all of your senses. Directly adjacent; a custom built DJ booth featuring a new, top-of-the-line digital sound system. With a massive one-hundred inch projection video wall, state-of-the-art lighting systems, and professional acoustics throughout the venue, Harpoons sets the stage for performance artists to engage and entertain the crowd. The main dance floor sits directly across from the newly built stage, and is surrounded by plush sectional furniture, designed to be moved and reconfigured so customers can customize their own perfect lounge setting.

In addition to the dance music by their new house DJ, Big E, whose mixes have been enjoyed all around SW Florida, as well as on the air; the new modernized Harpoon Harry’s will distinguish itself by being the first venue to offer real-time video gaming for sports fans. The establishment will be hosting a game night where participants can lounge in front of the massive one hundred inch projection screen and challenge their friends to a video game feud.

With no detail left unnoticed, the newly remodeled space also features high capacity airflow, and ten additional HD flat-screen TVs situated around its three large bars.

Come and experience the nightlife for yourself. DJ Big E will be on hand to host the grand opening on October 12, 2013.

Media Contact: Corinne Wimberly –

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New looks for Smuggler’s restaurants

September 15, 2013

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New looks for Smuggler’s restaurants - Sun Newspapers 9/15/2013

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Pirates storm Punta Gorda for annual festival

July 29, 2013

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The fifth annual Pirate Fest took place at Fishermen’s Village last weekend.  View some of the highlights shown on Fox 4 and WINK News:

For more information about the event, please visit

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