ALEXANDRIA, VA – “It is official,” says the headline of a post on the Ballyshaners’ social media page. “Alexandria’s very own Mango Mike is the Grand Marshal of the 41st Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. We can’t wait to see such a fabulous local celebrity lead the parade down King Street.”
The announcement in full reads:
Mike Anderson, aka “Mango Mike” Anderson, has had a long and impactful career as a restaurateur in Alexandria, since the opening of his first restaurant and bar in 1979, Shooter McGees.
After landing his first restaurant job at the age of 22, a dishwashing position at King’s Landing in Old Town, Alexandria, where he hung his college diploma above the dishwashing machine, rolled up his sleeves, and has been hard at work ever since. As of today, Mike has successfully owned and operated 20 restaurants in the DMV area throughout his career.
His most known claim to fame, Mango Mike’s, a Caribbean restaurant located on the west side of Alexandria, was Mike’s longest running venture, serving the community for 19 years. Its success stretched to the southern coast of Delaware, where he opened a second location in Bethany Beach that is still open today.
Mike’s philanthropic contributions to the community are many, dating back to the 1980s when his Shooter McGee’s Alexandria Autumn 10K raised more than $50,000 for Special Olympics. Today, in an innovative partnership with
ACT for Alexandria, Mike gives back to more than 75 local nonprofits by donating 25 cents for every burger sold at Holy Cow, Del Ray’s Gourmet Burger Joint.
Recognition for Mike’s leadership in the food service industry includes a 1997 RAMMY (Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington) Award for Mango Mike’s as Best New Restaurant, the 2013 Chamber of Commerce Small Business of the Year Award for Holy Cow, and the Restaurateur of the Year Award from the Virginia Tourism Bureau. Mike was named the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce Business Leader of the Year in 1999 and served as the organization’s Chairman of the Board in 2011. In 2014, he was inducted into the Living Legends of Alexandria. Additionally, he was a founding board member of the Alexandria Convention and Visitors Association and past chair of the Alexandria Small Business Development Center.
Currently, Mike and his wife Donna Anderson, with the help of his daughter Danielle Mammel and son-in-law David Mammel, own and operate HomeGrown Restaurant Group, a six restaurant group located within the Carlyle and Del Ray neighborhoods of Alexandria. The group includes Pork Barrel BBQ, Holy Cow, The Del Ray Pop Up Bar, Tequila & Taco, Sweet Fire Donna’s, and Whiskey & Oyster.
Setting aside his career accomplishments and philanthropic contributions, he’s most proud of the love from his wife Donna, three daughters, Danielle (34), Chelsea (32), Dakota (29), and grandsons Sawyer (7), Shae (5), and Riley (1).