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Popular diner opening in Rexburg soon

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REXBURG – The American diner that’s always open will soon have a home in Rexburg.

A Denny’s restaurant is in the works at 585 North Second East in the spot formerly occupied by the Teton Lanes bowling alley.

Thomas Peterson, one of three partners in the business, tells EastIdahoNews.com it will be complete sometime this year. He’s hoping they can break ground on the project soon.

“We’re (putting the finishing touches on a deal) with the contractors. It would’ve happened already, but with the craziness of the pandemic (it’s been delayed),” Peterson says. “Our goal is to get started just as soon as we can on groundbreaking.”

Peterson and his partners, Tod Peterson (brother) and Justin Silcock, purchased the property last summer after Teton Lanes was demolished. The project was originally supposed to get underway in September.

The 24/7 diner is expected to open in Rexburg with the updated modern look the franchise rolled out several years ago. Customers can expect the same menu they’ve experienced at other locations.

Denny’s is known for its breakfast items, like the peanut butter cup pancakes, steak and eggs and the ham, egg, and cheese Moons Over My Hammy sandwich. Its signature item is the build-your-own grand slam, which includes your choice of any four items. The Benny Breakfast with Hash Browns, along with the Strawberry Banana Bliss Smoothie and the Hearty 9-Grain Pancake Breakfast are popular as well.

Rexburg’s family community vibe and its abundance of college students is the reason Thomas says Denny’s is a good fit. He likes this particular location because it’s in between the Brigham Young University-Idaho campus and Walmart.

“We know it will do well there. It’s done well in similar communities we’ve operated them in and we’re excited to get there,” he says.

He and his partners own a Denny’s in Burley and Twin Falls. This is their first venture in the eastern Idaho market.

“When people come into our restaurants, they’ll always say, ‘This is the best Denny’s I’ve ever been in.’ We take pride in that as a small franchise and we hope to run (the Rexburg store) the way it’s supposed to be run — clean, friendly, family atmosphere where people are always welcome to come.”

Peterson estimates the restaurant will be about 5,000-square-feet with a seating capacity of 170 people. In addition to giving customers another dining-out option, he’s happy to be able to provide job opportunities for college students and others in the area.

“When we open, we’d like to (hire) around 100 people … to run 24-hour, seven-day shifts,” he says. “There’s plenty of people who are looking to have a subsidized income during their full-time college (experience).”

He’s looking forward to establishing a presence in Rexburg and hopes to be serving customers for many years to come.

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