He’s a face which many have known either during his service as Oakdale’s Mayor or his 17 years with Cost Less Market, also in Oakdale. Now, following 32 years in the grocery business, J.R. McCarty has hung up his smock and entered into the world of small business ownership.
In October of 2021, McCarty, along with his wife Gina opened The Breaking Point, just yards away from Cost Less Market on North Yosemite in Oakdale.
“I was going kind of stir crazy because I’ve worked since I was 16 years old,” McCarty said of his state of mind following a knee surgery in April of last year. “Then my wife said, Well, I know you don’t really want to go back, you have enough years and just think about something you want to do.”
During his ‘off time’ recovering from the surgery, McCarty shared he started exploring varying ideas of opportunities he might like to take advantage of if he were to retire from his years in the grocery business.
“I happen to know the owner of the shopping center and I gave him a call,” he said of the 820 N. Yosemite Ave., Oakdale, business location.
According to McCarty the owner indicated the space was still available and he’d be open to entertaining an offer.
“We live with this phrase from the book, all things are possible through Him,” McCarty said of the duo making the final decision. “If the Lord wants us to be successful, we will be successful and that’s the way we believe.
“It’s scary, but I told him we’ve just got to do it,” Gina said of opening the new gaming center.
“We prayed about it,” Gina continued, “when we put the offer in for the lease. We knew, this is what we can pay and we said a prayer before we sent the e-mail for our offer.”
A prayer which was simple, if it was the right thing for the family that the offer would be accepted … and it was.
So in July of 2021, the couple along with the help of some trade labor skilled friends, got to work transforming the space which once served fitness enthusiasts as a Bootcamp space.
The space complete with table top golf (aka OMG - Oakie Mini Golf), old school video games, dart boards, air hockey, shuffle board and corn hole is proving to be a fun stop for all ages: the young, families, as well as couples on a date night.
The beginning of it all, however, came by way of Gina’s vision, which is not seen when one first enters the space.
“It all started with a rage room first,” McCarty said of the early planning. “That is something we went and did and my wife loved it. What person doesn’t want to throw a dish or grab a cup and break it? So I said, okay let’s do a rage room.”
The Rage Room was an additional build, which is located beyond the bar area where customers can enjoy a beverage or a small snack. The couple also allows clients to bring food in from area eateries like Gold Dust Pizza just a few doors down in the same shopping center.
The couple shared while the bar area has proved to be an ideal addition, they have no regrets on choosing to serve can drinks and opting out of mixed drinks for their clientele.
“Our kids would always say there’s nothing to do here,” Gina said of their two sons. “So that’s why we wanted to open this and that’s honestly why we didn’t get our full liquor license, because if we did, minors wouldn’t be able to come here. The whole reason of us opening here was so the high school, junior high kids would have a safe place to come hang out.”
“There’s no regrets,” McCarty continued of the decision, “because you know, if someone wants to drink something different, they can go across the street and visit Charlie (Cow Track bar nearby).
“We’re all here to make a living. I support Charlie, I support Grains of Virtue and they all do the same for me,” he added.
The mix of catering to the young, while offering something for those of all ages is proving to be a home run on all counts for the new business.
The couple shared the draw to the Rage Room can be as simple as someone stopping by to release some work day stress or arranged parties for varying occasions, noting an upcoming Divorce Party, where the client inquired if she could bring a few personal items to add to her rage event.
“You know, heartbreak, family grief, fun; it’s just a little bit of everything for everybody,” McCarty said of the Rage Room.
“Lots of people come here for date night, just for the fact that, let’s do something outside the box,” he continued of being well-received since their opening. “Then they tell their friends and they tell their friends. The community support for a local business is overwhelming”.
Not only has the Oakdale community been supportive, the area’s corn hole community has as well, hosting weekly tournaments open to the public at The Breaking Point location.
“It’s a fun family game. You know, anyone could play it,” McCarty said of embracing the corn hole craze. “It doesn’t matter, what your skill level.”
From corn hole, to raging, or just simply enjoying a little bit of gaming with friends or family, The Breaking Point now offers the area something it hasn’t had in a while and has been asking for.
“Probably knowing that we opened a place where people can come as a family and have a good time,” McCarty shared of what he finds most rewarding of opening the family business. “Those people coming in here and saying this is what we wanted and this is what we needed. Someone finally listened to us.”
The Breaking Point is closed Tuesday and Wednesday. Hours of operation are: Monday and Thursday 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 pm.
The Breaking Point can be found on Social Media as well as on their website thebreakingpoint.net