Original Popi's Place sold to Pirates at a loss

Baseball organization paid $307,000 for diner so it could tear it down for parking

cschelle@bradenton.comFebruary 26, 2014 

BRADENTON -- The Pittsburgh Pirates picked up the original Popi's Place for a discount, according to land sales records.

The Pirates organization purchased Popi's Place on Feb. 14 for $307,000, according to the deed filed with the Manatee County Clerk. The Pirates announced the sale of the restaurant on Feb. 14 but did not disclose the sale price; the restaurant closed the same day.

The sale price was less than the $350,000 Gus, Anastasia and Constantine Johnson paid for it in 2004 from Popi and Manny Ameres. The Ameres family opened the original Popi's Place, 818 17th Ave W, in 1986 after buying The Dugout restaurant.

Popi's Place, located adjacent to the Pirates' spring training home McKechnie Field, will be demolished at the end of spring training to create about 60 parking spaces for season ticket holders, according to the Pirates organization.

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