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Idaho Voices

Businesses invest in city’s future

Thu., Feb. 19, 2009

Eateries, computer store recently opened

Rathdrum businesses have been on the move during the past six months. A few have closed, several opened, and two relocated; while a couple have remained “in the works.” The recent closures include three eateries: two pizzerias and an old-time favorite, A&W.

K-12 Clothing Exchange, Dawghaus Computers and the Brugge Salon closed their doors during the same period; while one longtime Main Street business, Steve Nagel State Farm Insurance relocated to Commercial Park Avenue; and Taco Bell Express expanded into a new building.

The good news is, despite the struggling economy, several intrepid businessmen have determined Rathdrum to be a community that will sustain them and have opened for business.

Rathdrum resident Randy Youngdell recently filled the retail space left when Taco Bell built its new store. Hoping to attract customers with 22 sandwich combinations, soups and gourmet salads, Youngdell opened San Francisco Style Sourdough Eatery earlier this month, with bright décor and high hopes for the product he came to “love” while working in a similar franchise store in Spokane.

Youngdell, a 20-year veteran of the industry, believes the promise of “freshly baked bread, fresh ingredients, and good service,” will entice customers interested in health conscious eating alternatives. “And, it’s affordable,” he added, outlining a lunch, including drink, for under $5.

So far, business has been great. “It’s been real exciting. People are trying everything,” he said.

A grand opening is planned for a couple of weeks, about the same time the drive-through window will open. The Sourdough Eatery is next to Hico at 15963 N. Highway 41. It is open daily from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Call 687-2207.

Just down the road, Marshall Hegney hopes to attract home deliveries with great pizza – and the high school crowd by offering two slices of pizza and a drink for $3. The phone-in and take-out pizzeria is the first West Side Pizza franchise in Idaho, and the 16th in the Pacific Northwest.

Hegney, who has plans to move to Rathdrum in the near future, says he is “really, really pleased,” with the amount of business so far, finding that many are stopping by to give his pizza a try. What they find, he said, is crust and sauce made daily with the freshest ingredients available. “And you get ample toppings at a competitive price,” he added.

Hegney has been able to put together an excellent crew, and says they are eager to deliver the “best pizza in town” to your home. West Side Pizza is adjacent to Rathdrum Lube Center along Highway 41, near Dairy Queen. Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday. Call 687-3742.

Owner Gary Kender, former owner of Longboard Burgers in Coeur d’Alene, is betting Rathdrum’s hamburger-loving customers will take to his Surf City Burgers. The restaurant replaced A&W, opening inside Stein’s IGA in December with a menu featuring all-natural ingredients.

“Everything is fresh,” said night manager Sandy Rickson, “and we use 100 percent cheese. Put all that together and you get a heck of a burger.”

Business so far has been good. “It’s going fantastic,” said Rickson. “Rathdrum is really embracing us.” So far Rathdrumites have taken to the Double-Double Combo (two beef patties and two slices of cheese), and their homemade chili, she said.

Surf City Burgers is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Stop by their drive-through if you’re short on time. Call 687-0942.

PC Tune Computer Solutions, a computer sales and repair business, opened inside the Super One Rathdrum store in December, replacing Dawghaus Computer. The store is the second for owner Roger Lundlum, who operates a similar business inside Post Falls Super One.

The company offers computer upgrades, service and repair; new computer sales; dial-up and high speed Internet; and cellular phones and accessories. Stop by and ask about their special prices for motherboard CPU and RAM upgrades. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday though Saturday. Call 704-4501.

The Shady Bar & Grill re-opened its doors following the devastating fire that destroyed the business in July 2007. Cars and trucks lined the highway the first night the bar turned on the beer lights and opened its doors last December, and business has been brisk ever since. The bar is at 14567 Highway 53.

And, there are still a couple of more businesses we can look forward to. The Les Schwab Tire Center appears to be nearing completion; Kevin Randles swears the liquor store is still under construction; and we still have hopes that Lakeland Hardware will once again open its doors. There are also rumors another take-n-bake pizza store will soon be opening in the building formerly occupied by Nick & Willie’s Pizza.

Be sure to check out Rathdrum’s hard-working local businesses and see what they have to offer.

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