4 Rivers plans to open 1st Polk County location in 2022

15th restaurant to open in Lakeland

4 Rivers Smokehouse (Copyright 2020 by WKMG ClickOrlando - All rights reserved.)

LAKELAND, Fla. – Lakeland will soon be home to Polk County’s first 4 Rivers Smokehouse location, according to the restaurant chain.

In a news release, the chain announced it will be opening its 15th restaurant at The Shoppes at Lake Miriam Crossing, located at 4747 S. Florida Ave.


The location is set to be nearly 4,300 square feet in size with seating for 87 customers, according to the release, and will also feature a drive-thru as well as curbside pick-up and delivery options.

“Ever since opening the first 4 Rivers twelve years ago (in Winter Park), we’ve heard a large outcry from Lakeland residents asking us to open a Smokehouse in their city and it’s always been a goal of ours to do so,” said John Rivers, 4R Restaurant group founder/CEO in a statement. “We’re honored that Publix has given us the opportunity to open a Smokehouse in its beautiful Publix GreenWise Market complex in Lakeland, which bridges the gap between our nearest locations in Kissimmee and Tampa. We look forward to bringing our barbecue ministry to Lakeland later this year where we’ll be neighbors with Publix, a company that shares our commitment to giving back to the community.”

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No opening date has been set, but the release said the restaurant would open in 2022.

The chain is also planning to open a new location in Orlando’s SoDo neighborhood at 3200 S. Orange Ave. The company said that location would open sometime in early 2022, but no date has been set.

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About the Author:

Thomas Mates is a digital storyteller for News 6 and ClickOrlando.com. He also produces the podcast Florida Foodie. Thomas is originally from Northeastern Pennsylvania and worked in Portland, Oregon before moving to Central Florida in August 2018. He graduated from Temple University with a degree in Journalism in 2010.