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Mexican restaurant chain to open Waynesboro location

October 28, 2009|By JENNIFER FITCH

WAYNESBORO, Pa. -- The brothers who seven years ago started the Mexican restaurant chain Montezuma plan to open their fourth location by the end of 2009.

The Munoz brothers are leasing the only remaining vacant space in Gold's Plaza at the intersection of Walnut and East Third streets in Waynesboro. The restaurant will be in the southernmost portion of the shopping center, which was renovated in 2007 and 2008 by its owners, the Ryckis family.

When learning about Franklin County, the Ryckises, of Carlisle, Pa., heard several comments about how good the food is at Montezuma, Donovan Ryckis said.

He and his parents fell in love with the restaurant, especially its carnitas. They talked to Montezuma's management several times about how much they'd like one of the restaurants to open in Waynesboro.

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"It's kind of two years in the making," Donovan Ryckis said.

Before long, the new Montezuma will join its sister businesses, two of which are in Chambersburg, Pa., and one in Gettysburg, Pa.

"We're trying to see if we can make it by the first or second week of December," Jesus "Chuy" Munoz said.

The restaurant will encompass 3,500 square feet. Munoz estimated it will employ 14 people and have a seating capacity of 140.

The Waynesboro restaurant will be better designed than the others to accommodate large parties, he said.

Kitchen equipment, a few new walls and carpet need to be installed, Munoz said.

Customer feedback contributed to the decision to open in Waynesboro, Munoz said. Each existing restaurant averages 200 checks a day.

"We have quite a few customers from Waynesboro who go to Chambersburg," Munoz said, saying the response to them for a while has been "we will, we will" open in their community.

The Munoz family, which formerly lived in West Virginia and Virginia, opened the first Montezuma on Wayne Avenue seven years ago, followed by the U.S. 30 restaurant five years ago. The Gettysburg restaurant will celebrate its second anniversary in December.

Chuy Munoz identified quick service, good food and reasonable prices as the reasons for the restaurants' success.

A Mexican restaurant closed in the Ryckises' shopping center shortly before they purchased it. Kevin, Suria and Donovan Ryckis opened a Gold's Gym and renovated the plaza, which now also holds Crosswalk Church, WBO Graphics, Look Solutions, Racewax.com and Buddy Lowans concrete countertops. The plaza also features Beck & Benedict Hardware and its theater that is used for bluegrass music.

The center once served as a bustling outlet mall in the 1980s.

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