Save on Your Trip to Nauvoo!

Did you know? If you subscribe to our website YOU can get FREE discounts to
Nauvoo businesses!

Burgers and Inspiration: The Story Behind Nauvoo’s Red Front Restaurant

This story starts with a burger.

Just as Jordan Squire took his first juicy bite, his wife Morgan dropped the bomb.

We need to sell our house, move to Nauvoo, and open a restaurant, she told him.

Morgan & Jordan Squire, Owners of the Red Front Restaurant in Nauvoo

An Unexpected Path

Keep in mind, the Squires were not in the restaurant industry.

He was a computer programmer and she was a respiratory therapist. They had their “forever home” in Utah. Their family was there. Their friends and their jobs.

Why in the world would they drop everything and move to a small town to open a restaurant?

The answer: inspiration.

A Remarkable Impression

The Squires were visiting Nauvoo in 2019 when Morgan had an “all-consuming spiritual experience” in the Nauvoo Temple.

As she sat in the temple that day, she had the undeniable and remarkable impression that her family should move to Nauvoo and buy a restaurant there.

At first, she tried to forget about it.

“That sounds like what a crazy person would do,” she said.

As time passed, though, she couldn’t bring herself to forget. She gathered together her courage and decided to tell her husband.

Enter Jordan and his innocuous burger.

Photo courtesy Morgan Squire.

Surviving, even Thriving, during COVID

Little did they know that in just a few months they would be the ones serving up burgers in Nauvoo, and after the COVID-storm hit, they would be the only fully-operating restaurant left in town.

When they first moved in the summer of 2019, there were five restaurants in Nauvoo. They weren’t sure how they were going to compete.

They were open for just under a year when COVID caused the world to shut down. But the Red Front did not shut down. Actually, they never had to close their doors at all.

“Every month it was miracle after miracle after miracle,” Morgan said. They were not only able to survive COVID, but they used that time for their benefit.

“We could slowly ramp up and learn how to run a restaurant,” Morgan said. In addition, “COVID helped us bond with the community.”

The Squire Family in front of The Red Front in Nauvoo, Illinois. Photo courtesy Morgan Squire.

Living the Dream They Didn’t Know They Had

The Squires are now highly involved in Nauvoo. Besides the restaurant, they also run two local Airbnb’s. Jordan is on the school board and Morgan is a member of the chamber of commerce.

“This is where we were meant to be,” Morgan said. “Nauvoo is quiet and it’s peaceful. It’s a different pace of life.”

“We’re living the dream we didn’t know we had,” Morgan said.

The Red Front “Brick” Ice Cream Dessert. Photo courtesy Morgan Squire.

About the Restaurant

The Red Front is a quick-service restaurant serving American food. They are housed in a historic building that originates from the late 1800s. The Squires kept the name “Red Front” from previous owners dating back to 1930.

Their food is made fresh to order. This means that the food may not be prepared as fast as McDonald’s, but the Squires say they prioritize their food’s quality over speed.

Jordan and Morgan enjoy managing the restaurant. You’ll often see Morgan popping in-and-out of the kitchen to check on things. She says she loves to spend time there and talk with the customers.

“I just love to share this story and be a part of Nauvoo.”

The Red Front is located at 1305 Mulholland St.

The “Burgerdilla” from The Red Front in Nauvoo. Photo courtesy Morgan Squire.

Restaurant Guide

#NauvooBlogger Recommends

Teriyaki Burger

The Owners Recommend

Chipotle Burger or Burgerdilla

Kids Recommend

Cinnamon Rolls

Breakfast Croissants

Tater Tots

Hot Dog

Cheese Burger

$ Low Prices

Visitor Tips

  • The restaurant is stroller & wheelchair accessible thanks to a ramp entrance.
  • Restrooms are available (handicap accessible). Changing table available.
  • If you visit Nauvoo during the summer, expect longer wait times or consider buying ready-made items from their freezers so you can grab-and-go!

Thanks for reading! I hope this article assists you on your next visit to Nauvoo.


Justina #NauvooBlogger

Follow us on Social Media
Scroll to Top