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Danville Cheddar's to open in October

August 15, 2013|By STEPHANIE MOJICA | smojica@amnews.com

The construction of an 8,700-square-foot Cheddar’s Casual Cafe near Walmart should be complete by Sept. 19 and pave the way for an October grand opening.

“The facility looks terrific,” said Danville-Boyle County Economic Development Partnership President/CEO Jody Lassiter during Thursday’s meeting of the Convention and Visitors Bureau board of directors.

“It’s Cheddar’s in a box, I tell you.”

Greer Companies owns about three dozen other Cheddar’s franchises not only in Kentucky, but also in Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, West Virginia and North Carolina. The restaurant and hospitality firm, based in Lexington, is independently owned and operated. Besides Cheddar’s franchises, Greer Companies owns hotel franchises of major chains, including Hilton and Marriott.

Lee Greer, company president, is a Lexington native who once worked as a Wall Street investment banker.

But because “restaurants were in his blood” Greer returned to Lexington to work closely with his father and the founder of the business, Phil Greer. Lee Greer became president of the firm in 1992.

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Greer said he has wanted to bring a Cheddar’s to Danville for at least a decade.

“It’s really a special community,” he said. “We try to open our franchises in towns we like to visit.”

Danville’s eatery will employ about 200 people, and most of those workers will devote at least 10 hours weekly to their jobs, according to Greer. The Cheddar’s staff will include between five and seven full-time managers.

Boyle County Judge-Executive Harold McKinney said he is certain Greer Companies will be a “great corporate citizen” of the community.

“We really want to welcome Cheddar’s,” McKinney said.

The judge-executive pointed out that people from surrounding counties will likely dine at the new restaurant and then visit other Danville area businesses.

Danville Mayor Bernie Hunstad said he is excited about the progress of the Cheddar’s construction effort.

“I get more calls and queries about when Cheddar’s is opening than anything else,” the mayor said.

Follow Stephanie Mojica on Twitter @StephMojica.

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