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Biz Buzz: Here’s what’s going on at the old Pizza Hut location in Rexburg

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Pizza Hut on Main Street in Rexburg was demolished last week after more than 40 years of business | Courtesy Blake Garner

Do you want to know what’s happening on the east Idaho business scene? We’ve got you covered. Here is a rundown of this week’s business news across the valley.



Plans for new shopping center in Rexburg moving forward

Garner Contracting & Developing demolished the old Pizza Hut building last week. | Courtesy Blake Garner

REXBURG – Since it was demolished last week, many of you have wondered what’s going on with the Pizza Hut location at 163 W. Main Street in Rexburg.

The restaurant closed suddenly in June. A note on the door indicated they would reopen in several months.

Paul Larson, the owner of the property, tells a 4,700-square-foot shopping plaza is being built in its place.

“Pizza Hut is moving into the new space, and we are looking for two additional tenants,” says Larson.

Each space in the new development will be 1,500 square feet.

Larson says the project is moving forward full speed and declines to offer any further comment, but Blake Garner, the contractor for the project, says the new Pizza Hut will offer delivery and take-out only.

“The footings are dug now for the new building, and concrete work has commenced,” Garner says.

Larson also owns Great Scott’s LLC, the gas station right around the corner. He bought the property in April 2018 in hopes of expanding the gas station. Garner says it has evolved into a revitalization project for downtown.

“His whole purpose behind this whole thing is to revitalize downtown — make it look better, bring good buildings back and clean it up,” says Garner.

The new development will have a rock and stucco exterior, Garner says, and resemble the appearance of The Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy next door.

Although the other two tenants have not yet been determined, Garner says this shopping center will be a nice addition to Rexburg.

“As a businessman, it makes more sense to have three tenants, for Rexburg to provide three locations in one building,” he says.

Pizza Hut closed its doors June 29 after more than 40 years of business. It was built right after the Teton Dam flood in 1977. A hamburger joint called Shirley’s Drive-in occupied the space before Pizza Hut.

The project is slated for completion in mid-November.

Click here to learn more about the project.


Community Recreation Center in Pocatello closed for maintenance

POCATELLO – The city of Pocatello’s Community Recreation Center closed its doors Monday for annual maintenance. During the closure, staff will be upgrading portions of the facility and performing a deep cleaning. The front desk will remain open for program registration and general information Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The CRC is scheduled to reopen Sept. 3, but due to unforeseen circumstances, the date may be rescheduled. Contact the staff with questions at (208) 232-3901.

Dutch Bros opening new location in Ammon

AMMON – You may have noticed from signs that recently went up that a new Dutch Bros Coffee shop is coming in Ammon. The new store is going in on the corner of Eagle Drive and Sunnyside Road. Operator Tanya Thomason tells the opening date is still being determined and will be announced at a later date. A grand opening celebration is also in the works. We will post updates when they are available. Dutch Bros opened two locations in Idaho Falls last year. The first one opened at 211 N. Woodruff last May. The second opened in September at 830 E. 17th Street.

Rexburg housing development opening with a ribbon cutting next month

REXBURG – Eden Apartments, a new housing development in Rexburg, is officially opening its doors and they’re inviting you to celebrate. The Eden staff is hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony and luncheon Thursday, Sept. 26. The ribbon-cutting begins at noon at 555 W. Mikan Drive. Lunch is being provided by Cafe Rio.



Local man hoping to raise money for kids in need during annual charity golf tournament

BLACKFOOT – For the second year in a row, Michael Jorgensen is hoping to raise funds for Make-A-Wish Idaho.

The Special Teams Make-A-Wish Idaho charity golf tournament kicks off Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Blackfoot Golf course.

Those who attend will participate in a golf scramble and have a chance at winning some big prizes, including a pellet grill from Leisure Time, a custom-made knife set from Schenk Knives, two round-trip flights from Allegiant Air and a one-night stay at Sawtelle Mountain Resort in Island Park.

Jorgensen has a child with special needs who has benefitted from Make-A-Wish. His son has a degenerative neurological disease that takes over the functioning matter in his brain.

“He is a happy, cheerful boy. He has a great personality, and we’re happy to have him in our family,” Jorgensen tells

The disease is terminal, and doctors are projecting another five years before the boy will succumb to the illness. Meanwhile, Make-A-Wish Idaho helped make his son’s wish a reality. He and his family were able to go on an all-expense-paid trip to Disney World. It was that connection that inspired Jorgensen to get involved and help give back.

“We’ve been very impressed with the foundation and have always wanted to give back. We love being involved and try to support (other fundraisers that support Make-A-Wish throughout the year),” says Jorgensen. “We volunteer where we can. It’s such a happy place to be.”

About 100 kids in Idaho benefit from the Make-A-Wish foundation every year. The average cost to grant the wish of one child is $6,500. Jorgensen says they raised about $7,000 at last year’s event, and he’s hoping to surpass that amount this year.

“My goal is to raise as much money as possible because these kids deserve it,” Jorgensen says.

The event kicks off at the golf course at 8:30 a.m. Tickets are $75 per person or $300 per team. You can also purchase a raffle ticket for $5. One hundred percent of the proceeds will benefit kids in Idaho.

You don’t have to be a good golfer to come. He is inviting you and your family to come and support the cause.

Raffle prizes will be drawn immediately following the event. Lunch will be provided.

The Blackfoot Golf Course is at 3115 Teeples Drive.



Classic car dealership to open in Idaho Falls

IDAHO FALLS – The first business of its kind in eastern Idaho is just a few weeks away from opening in Idaho Falls.

It’s called Mac’s Classics, Hotrods, & Customs, and it’s a dealership that sells classic cars only.

The business has five cars ready to be sold, including a 1965 Volkswagen Beetle, a 1971 Chevy Nova and a 1965 Mercury Cyclone.



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