Local Pizza place Shorty’s to expand in March

Willy Navyjas, a local Shorty's regular, eating a slice of pizza in his very own labeled chair. Brooke Giacin | Multimedia Journalist Photo credit: Brooke Giacin

By Meredith Pratt | Staff Writer

Waco is experiencing a period of significant growth. Following the trend of expansion in 2020 is local restaurant Shorty’s Pizza Shack, better known to students simply as “Shorty’s.”

Surrounded by apartment complexes and student housing, the restaurant had few options for expansion. However, after leasing surrounding storefronts and removing a house next door, their plans to expand can now proceed.

General manager Chris Salazar said that construction is expected to begin around mid-March, and the added space will “alleviate busy nights” and help “business run smoother” overall.

While no visible changes will be made to the dining area of the restaurant, customers can expect faster service and delivery as the extra space will be used to create room for catering services and another kitchen.

McKinney senior Channing Mead said that the times he has gone to Shorty’s with his roommates the pizza was “pretty decent,” but the service they experienced was slow.

The restaurant is hoping to try to mitigate experiences like Mead’s with the upcoming renovations that are targeted to solve this very issue.

The shack, located only a few streets from campus, is home of the popular Pizza Pillow and offers hungry Waco natives and visitors numerous kinds of deep dish pizza and wings.

Created with Baylor students in mind, the restaurant was opened by Baylor Alum Ted “Shorty” Browning and his wife Randle in 2011. They were later joined in business by fellow alum and friend Kyle Ferguson and his wife Jaime in 2015.

Shorty’s layout consists of indoor high-top seating and a patio decked with outdoor tables. The walls are covered in Baylor memorabilia and TVs.

Shorty’s website says that the restaurant’s design is “inspired by his favorite dive bars on Maui and the sprawling patios in his hometown of Austin.”

“Shorty’s has a chill atmosphere with a local vibe,” Mead said. “It really is the atmosphere that keeps us wanting to go back.

As the restaurant expands in size and in its delivery services, their motto remains the same: “Pitchers, Pies, and Good Vibes.”