May 26, 2023 |
Photo – Rochelle Ranch Golf Course Kitchen – Bigfoot99 file photo
The Rawlins city council has reached an agreement with a local entrepreneur to open the golf course restaurant.
The city has had trouble finding people to run a year-round restaurant in the Rochelle Ranch Golf Course. City documents say the course had a restaurant concessionaire last year who operated for one season with no interest in returning for a second. Rawlins Recreation Department Director Jason Sehon said he searched far and wide for someone to fill that role.
Sehon said a restaurant at the golf course benefits not just golfers, but the entire community. The rec department director said he’s found the right person to take over the course’s dining operation. Sehon said local restauranteur Edgar Haymond has several ideas to keep the restaurant open through the winter, when attendance at Rochelle Ranch Golf Course is down.
Sehon said he likes how motivated and eager Haymond is and feels he will be a good fit for the position. Haymond said he has over 25 years of experience in the restaurant industry.
Haymond said consistency will be the key to success. The restauranteur said he would begin slowly by selling drinks, then increase his restaurant’s offerings throughout the season.
Sehon said he would like the city to sign an agreement with Haymond to allow him to run the restaurant. The contract would begin that day, May 24th, and continue to May 15th, 2024. Sehon said to help him succeed, the city will only charge Haymond $100 a month for the first four months. Sehon said the rent would increase to $700 after October 1st.
Sehon said the city would revisit the contract after six months to adjust the rent price. He said if the restaurant was doing well, the city could raise the rent. If the restaurant was struggling, Sehon said the city could agree to lower the rent or keep it the same.
After the previous concessionaire left, Sehon said golf course staff purchased food and alcohol in preparation to run the restaurant themselves. He said the contract would require Haymond to buy the remaining food items, at cost. The contract also calls for a $500 security deposit to cover any future repairs.
Sehon said he would ensure the restaurant would not open until Haymond’s licenses and inspections were completed. The recreation director said the city has used a similar contract in the past.
Vice Mayor Sanger asked Sehon about the earliest possible opening date for the restaurant. Sehon said Haymond was still waiting for permits and a final inspection. The rec director said the process typically doesn’t take long. Sehon said he expects Haymond’s restaurant to open next week, at the latest.
The council members voted unanimously to approve the contract with Haymond.
The Rochelle Ranch Golf Course is hosting a tournament this weekend. Sehon said staff would operate the dining facility for the event. Since the agreement requires Haymond to purchase any remaining food, Sehon said he would calculate the price of the concessions sold during the tournament and remove that amount from Haymond’s bill.