Operating a restaurant near a golf course can be a tricky proposition, so the Sudden Valley Community Association plans to provide more support for its next tenant.
At the end of September Bob's Burgers & Brew closed in Sudden Valley, owing about $41,000 to the association. The restaurant was operated by franchise owner Steve Somers.
Since that time, the association has been negotiating to reopen the restaurant, possibly as Bob's again. Jeff Schlaack, general manager of the association, said they hope to have the restaurant reopen before the end of the year and to have the debt resolved.
Schlaack said the goal with the next restaurant vendor is to develop a better business relationship to help it succeed.
"We would love to help market the restaurant better," he said. "The Sudden Valley association doesn't want to be in the restaurant business, but we do want to make an effort to have a long-term relationship with the restaurant operator."
A restaurant next to the Sudden Valley golf course has some advantages: Not only is there a captive audience with the golfers, it's one of the few places for a sit-down meal for residents of the area. The downside is that when foul weather arrives, the golfers disappear.
Schlaack believes that since the restaurant has conference space, catering more to organized events, from Chamber of Commerce networking mixers to weddings and anniversaries, would be a way to make up for the offseason, something they haven't capitalized on in the past. Other options might include live music events as a way to regularly draw people to the restaurant.
Along with better marketing, the association is considering other upgrades while negotiating with a new tenant. Schlaack said the association's board of directors is actively involved in the process.
"What the board is doing now is taking a hard look at this," he said, adding that while the board is concerned about the $41,000 owed, it also has to consider what's best for the operation and the community.
Before the closure in September, a Bob's restaurant had been in that spot since 2001. Before that, it was Palmers on the Green, operated by Thomas and Danielle Palmer.
UPDATE ON THE WOODS COFFEE REMODEL
Work is progressing at The Woods Coffee's new café going in across Lakeway Drive from the Fred Meyer shopping center. After a few delays because of the weather and fixing some unexpected building structural issues, the cafe is expected to be ready sometime in January, said owner Wes Herman.
The building's other space has drawn interest from several potential tenants. Herman said they are considering fast/casual-style food service establishments for the 2,200-square-foot vacant second spot.
Meanwhile, Woods' new café near the Barkley movie theater is scheduled to open Dec. 10.
Chico's opened last week at Bellis Fair. The women's clothing store has more than 600 stores across the U.S.
... Coast Salish Creations, which offers Native American art, is now open at Bakerview Square.
... Pizzazza, a restaurant inside the newly remodeled Yorky's gas station and market on Bellingham's Alabama Street, is now open for business. According to its Facebook page, Pizzazza opened Nov. 12 and offers a full-menu, including pizza from its Wood Stone Corp. oven.
... As a thank you to its customers, Jalapenos is offering 50 percent off their total bill on Wednesday, Nov. 21, to those who pay cash. It's the first-ever "cash day" for Jalapenos, which has three restaurants in Bellingham. Owner Jesse Cantu said he wanted to do it as a way to show his appreciation to customers, and is thinking about offering it annually on the day before Thanksgiving.
In other Jalapenos news, the restaurant recently hired a manager for its catering business. Sara Sprinkle is the new catering manager. She previously worked at New York Pizza & Bar in Lynden and also at Jalapenos when it first opened in 1999.
... After an extensive remodeling project, Fairhaven Runners is back in its permanent space at 1209 11th St.
... A new airbrush tanning salon recently opened in Bellingham. Airbrush Tanning by Gina opened at 2420 Yew St., inside Shearer's Hair Design. The airbrush tanning salon is operated by Gina Whaley and is open mostly by appointment Tuesday through Saturday. For details, call 360-733-3040.
... The West Holly Market, a convenience store at 120 W. Holly St. in Bellingham, has closed.
... Good Burger at 5962 Guide Meridian in Laurel is moving to 5687 Third Ave. in Ferndale, near Chihuahua Mexican Restaurant. According to its Facebook page, Good Burger's last day in Laurel is Tuesday, Nov. 20.
... Black Drop Coffee House is celebrating 10 years with an open house from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 25. The coffeehouse will offer free cups of coffee, tea, cider and cupcakes.
Reach DAVE GALLAGHER at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 715-2269.