Lipe, who grew up in Fort Scott and most recently lived in Kansas City, is the owner of Sharky's Pub and Grub, a restaurant and bar that recently opened in a building located at 16 N. National Ave.
The building previously housed Rusty's Sports Bar and Grill, an enterprise owned by Rusty Felt that operated for several years before closing late last month. Lipe said he purchased the business and building from Felt.
Lipe said he plans to continue operating the establishment as a sports bar and grill, but his business will have a "shark" theme -- complete with a large plastic shark above the bar and other images of sharks throughout the restaurant, as well as a planned aquarium behind the bar -- and other differences from the previous eatery including design changes and a unique themed menu.
"I want to create a different atmosphere, where you feel like you're walking off the beach," he said. "In a small town, you don't walk into these types of places every day."
Sharky's will be place where families can enjoy lunch or dinner during the day, but will become more of an establishment geared toward adults late at night. Some entertainment, such as live music and disc jockeys, will be provided during the late night hours, Lipe said.
Lipe said he had wanted to move his family back to Fort Scott and open a local business for some time and saw the purchase of the former Rusty's building as a perfect opportunity.
He said the deal to buy the building took about a year to complete.
Most of Rusty's staff, as well as a few new employees, have been hired to work at the establishment, Lipe said.
"We want to create some jobs here," he said.
Although the business' hours have not been officially set yet, Lipe said the current plan is to operate Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. the following day. Lipe said he also plans to keep the kitchen open late each night. He said the grill and pub are officially open to the public.
Not only is he the owner of the business, Lipe said he expects to be on hand to help each day throughout the restaurant, working in the kitchen or behind the bar, and wherever else he is needed.
Lipe, along with electricians and other workers, was inside the business Tuesday morning, working to make repairs and final adjustments to prepare it for its opening that afternoon.
Lipe grew up in Fort Scott, attending local schools and graduating from Fort Scott High School in 1991. He graduated from Kansas State University in 1997. He has owned bars in Manhattan and Lawrence and said he is still part-owner of a pub in Kansas City.