Chick-fil-A slated to open in September

Monday, August 8, 2011

Chick-fil-A's grand opening in Cape Girardeau is now set for Sept. 8, according to Brenda Morrow, of Chick-fil-A's corporate communications office. It was previously reported that the restaurant would open Aug. 25, according to a business license filed at city hall.

A new Facebook page, Chick-fil-A at Cape Girardeau, has also been launched to promote the restaurant. It includes a link to a job application for those seeking employment. People may also apply at a trailer at the construction site.

Chick-fil-A has a tradition of giving away free Chick-fil-A for a year to the first 100 customers in the form of 52 coupons for free meals. Customers must be in line at least 24 hours to qualify. A recent Associated Press story reported the Chick-fil-A turns the overnight wait into a party in the parking lot, with hula hoop contests, karaoke and lots of free chicken. It does line checks to make sure people don't leave and distributes wristbands to make sure they don't split shifts.

* Maid-Rite interested in Cape Girardeau: One of the country's oldest franchise restaurants says it wants to locate in Cape Girardeau but needs a local partner. Maid-Rite Diner is known for its seasoned ground beef sandwiches. The Muscatine, Iowa-based restaurant has targeted Cape Girardeau in its 2011 franchise growth plan.

"Cape Girardeau has an excellent base population and a solid economy," said Tania Burt, executive vice president of franchise development for the Maid-Rite Corp. "... Maid-Rite has a lot of brand equity in the area that leads me to believe this would be an excellent business opportunity for a local entrepreneur."

Maid-Rite, which will celebrate its 85th anniversary this year, has about 70 franchise restaurants in nine Midwest states. For more information, visit www.maid-rite.com.

* Perry County seeking new economic developer: Following the resignation of Perry County Economic Development Authority director Larry Tucker in February, Perryville and Perry County officials joined with authority board members and a group of concerned businessmen to review their economic development system.

"While the ultimate goals remain unchanged, the process itself stood to be improved," said Perryville city administrator Brent Buerck. "We used this resignation as an opportunity to explore options to strengthen our already improving economic development efforts."

Meetings with representatives of the county, city, the EDA board and the Perryville Development Corp. led to the creation of a board charged with management of the Economic Development Authority office. The changes will allow the authority's original board to return to its statutory purpose of issuing bonds, Buerck said.

The new board consists of two elected officials from both the board of aldermen and county commission, as well as two representatives from the existing Economic Development Authority board and two representatives from the not-for-profit industrial development group, the Perryville Development Corp. A representative from the SEMO Regional Planning Commission and Buerck will serve as advisers and participate as nonvoting members of the new board, which has begun a candidate search for a director and is now accepting and evaluating resumes. For more information, contact Buerck at 573-547-2594.

Southeast Missourian business reporter Melissa Miller may be contacted at 388-3646 or mmiller@semissourian.com.

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