By Kiley Norvell
Special to The Collegian
The doors to the House of Juju in Old Town Clovis open at 11 a.m. Half an hour later, the whole restaurant is alive with the hum of lunchtime diners ordering their favorite items.
Owner Julie Glenn is the first one out of the kitchen, rushing to help customers with a smile on her face. Her sunny disposition matches the bright yellow walls of the restaurant, complementing the welcoming, friendly charm that only a local restaurant can provide.
“We saw this as an opportunity to build something new and exciting for the community,” Glenn said.
When House of Juju opened last December, Glenn faced many challenges, including staffing and scheduling. Fortunately, the Glenn family rallied together.
Julie’s husband, Scott, helps run the kitchen, along with her son, Josh Swanbom. Julie’s daughter, Jaynae Franklin, and her husband, Spencer, both work as servers. Justin Glenn, Julie’s son, works as server and manager.
“I love it and hate it at times,” Justin Glenn said about working with his family. “We butt heads at times, but usually [my mom] knows what she’s doing.”
Glenn has seen House of Juju grow into the success it is now first hand. From behind the bar, he can see the entire dining room. The tables are filled with a variety of people, from families to business people on their lunch break.
“Since we opened, we’ve continued to gain popularity and loyal customers,” Glenn said. “It’s unusual for us not to be busy.”
Sara White, a regular customer, is happy to see the restaurant succeed. She met Julie Glenn through a mutual friend and was instantly intrigued by the restaurant.
“The burgers sounded amazing, and the flatbreads sounded interesting,” White said. “I had to go in and try them for myself.”
White was not disappointed and has made House of Juju a first choice when going out to eat. She chooses House of Juju over other restaurants because she is “more into a family-run, localized business.” She has not been able to find her favorite menu item, the Juju Bleu Bison Burger, anywhere else locally.
“The burgers are great, but the potatoes and dipping sauces are amazing. It’s my favorite thing to have as an appetizer or with my burger,” White said. “The selection of beers they have is really good, too.”
While Glenn felt prepared to take on the challenges of starting her own business, she has also learned many new life lessons in the past six months.
“The biggest thing I’ve learned is that most people are pretty amazing,” Glenn said. “There are some really incredible people that have crossed my path.”