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Golden Corral in Waynesboro shuts its doors

November 04, 2008|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - On Sunday, the door of Waynesboro's Golden Corral restaurant welcomed patrons to eat all they could. On Monday, after a few months under new ownership, the message on the door was decidedly different.

Taped to the glass in stark black-and-white print was an apology.

"CLOSED. We apologize to the employees and the wonderful community of Waynesboro, but due to the unstable economy, the rise of food costs and the financial meltdown of the banking industry, we have been forced to close this establishment in an attempt to reorganize," the sign read.

A new owner took over the restaurant franchise a few months back, not long before it joined the Greater Waynesboro Area Chamber of Commerce, Executive Director Carlene Wilhide said.

Owned by Blue Ridge Corral LLC of Waynesboro, the restaurant had been the oldest buffet still open and operating in Waynesboro, Wilhide said.

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Christopher Connolly, president of Blue Ridge Corral LLC, could not be reached for comment Monday.

An April report from the Small Business Administration's Web site said Blue Ridge Corral LLC had been approved for $276,300 in federal loans.

"Due to the financial meltdown of the banking industry we were unable to secure an additional loan to keep this establishment open," it read.

For employees, the note taped to the door Monday offered a bit of solace after reading their jobs were lost.

"We will be sending employee references to the new Golden Corral in Hagerstown," it read.

The Hagerstown Golden Corral is under construction and its owner, Both Inc. of Virginia Beach, Va., is accepting applications for managers, servers and kitchen staff.

As of Monday, no employee names were forwarded from the Waynesboro restaurant, said Linda Branch, head of human resources for Both Inc.,

News of the Waynesboro restaurant closing surprised Branch, who said she did not receive any information on a neighboring franchise closing.

Golden Corral corporate spokesmen were unavailable for comment.

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