Written by Aaron-Michael Fox.
Marshall University legend and Pro Football Hall of Famer, Randy Gene Moss, returned to the Jewel City this week to open the newest “Crisppi’s Chicken” franchise and the first in the chain outside of Philadelphia, PA.
The restaurant chain, formerly known as “Chick-A-Boom,” came to the attention of Marshall fans over the summer when Mr. Moss announced that he would be partnering with founder Brittany Tolliferreo to become “half the face of the company.” At that time, he hinted at bringing a franchise back home to West Virginia with no further details.
Randy Moss, aka “The Freak,” has been in the city since Wednesday when Crisppi’s hosted a soft opening for VIPs and special guests to try out the food. In attendance were such notable Huntingtonians and Marshall community members as Mayor Steve Williams, Huntington Police Chief Phil Watkins, MU President Brad Smith, MU Athletic Director Christian Spears, Keith Morehouse, Chad Pennington, and of course, Randy’s mother Maxine Moss, among others. Mr. Spears and Mr. Smith presented the restaurant with a framed “Crisppi’s” No. 88 Marshall football jersey to celebrate the Grand Opening.
The restaurant, located at 801 3rd Avenue, opened to the general public Friday at 10AM. Freak Fans began arriving in the early morning hours in anticipation of meeting Randy in person. Some said they had been in line since 2 a.m. It was not in vain as Moss came out to greet the crowd and thank them before the ribbon cutting.
To raucous applause and spraying confetti, Moss, Brittany Tolliferreo, and their staff cut the ribbon on the new restaurant and opened the doors to the public a little after 10 a.m. Enthusiastic cheers greeted them from those in attendance. As the confetti rained down, Moss joked that he felt like he had just won the Super Bowl.
Crisppi’s menu, as the name would imply, is centered on fried chicken. They offer chicken sandwiches, tenders, wings, chicken & waffles, fries, and donuts. They also have a wide selection of proprietary drinks.
Moss made a point of saying that Crisppi’s is a “family-oriented” restaurant where “everybody is welcome.” He has been very open that he wants the restaurant to have a positive impact on the Huntington community that goes beyond a simple bottom line on a revenue stream. “I brought something back home,” Moss told the assembled crowd before opening the doors for business.