Cedaredge considers restaurant lease proposal
By Hank Lohmeyer
Published Thursday, April 28, 2016 7:51 am
A letter drafting proposals for operation of Cedaredge's golf course restaurant calls for more public spending, support, and a "partnership" arrangement for the town's restaurant business going forward.
A prospective husband-and-wife management team from Colorado Springs with some 20 years in the restaurant business has expressed interest in a lease-management deal with the town to operate the restaurant for three years. They state in a letter to the town, "We need your help to make this a profitable venture for us both. This needs to be more of a partnership to be a success."
Town staff reported there had been "a certain amount of requests" made by the prospective new managers as a result of their tour of the physical operation.
The town currently has no budget for improvements at the restaurant, town administrator Katie Sickles said. She suggested that the trustees consider a "not to exceed" budget amount for improvements and repairs as negotiations proceed.
In addition to proposing a partnership with the town on the restaurant operations, the couple pointed out a number of shortcomings in the current restaurant facility and marketing setup that will take more town resources to rectify.
In a letter dated April 19 to the town board, it was noted:
• The golf course is not a prime location for a restaurant.
• Signage is inadequate and more is needed on Highway 65 and elsewhere.
• Kitchen shortcomings include no viable prep area, no service window from kitchen, and shelving and heat lamps are inadequate or entirely absent.
• The restaurant is set up with two cooking lines requiring two staffs.
• The kitchen lacks cooling for a fresh made-to-order food program.
• The restaurant needs its own dedicated walk-in cooler for kegs, etc., instead of the shared space with the sprinkler/irrigation system room.
• There has to be website improvement for restaurant promotion.
• The town needs to advertise the restaurant.
• Other town marketing efforts are needed, and the restaurant would have to be the official site for official town events, including ones that are not golf specific.
• There needs to be more exposure for the restaurant on the town website.
According to a marketer's report presented to the town board on April 21, another visit is scheduled in May to iron out details, centering around a three-year lease.
The town administrator was given a go-ahead to enter negotiations with the prospective managers.
In a separate report on golf course operations from the town's Culture and Recreation committee, the following was stated:
"Gerry Mendralla brought up information about the items discussed at the February meeting regarding disc golf, miniature golf, play it forward and other aspects that would increase revenue at the golf course. Due to the nature of the discussion, the Golf Committee will discuss the items at their first 2016 meeting on April 21. Some felt that disc golf would not generate revenue because typically [players} do not register or pay a fee.
"There was concern about 'inbreeding' within the Golf Committee and concerns that some ideas in utilizing the golf course for public use outside of playing golf would be dismissed without serious consideration."