Orange Park church used to be a popular bar

Former Crazy Horse Saloon now Freedom Destiny Church

ORANGE PARK, Fla. – A popular bar is now a church. 

In the Orange Park building that used to house the Crazy Horse Saloon a new church opened Sunday with a celebratory atmosphere. The sign out front now reads Freedom Destiny Church.

"This started about 2011, we first came here, talked to owner of establishment," said pastor Adam Smithyman. "We wanted to turn it into a church."

Smithyman started the church with his wife in their Oakleaf home in 2008, and it has since grown to a congregation of around 500. The church has been raising money to move in here now.

"What this place was was basically a place of destruction, and we’re showing how people can be reconstructed," Smithyman said. "A bar can be a place of death, and Jesus is a place of rebirth."

Finding people who frequented this building under its old name was not hard.

"It’s so exciting," said Carol Southern, who attended the church Sunday. "I had come down here years ago myself and danced and threw a few beers back, and what a change, a change in me, a change in the church."

The church is non-denominational. They are affiliated with a string of churches up and down the east coast. Some members say they have left their previous church to join.

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