Friday, July 3, 2009

Serving up good coffee and fast cars

Story and photo by Bruce Thorson

July 3, 2009, Imperial, Neb: Jennifer Bell, owner of JJs restaurant, has found business success. It's in customer service and keeping the prices right. She's serving up a fresh pot of coffee to Marilyn Hust (left), Monna Milner, Kay Haarbers and Lucille Bauerle. Jennifer said they show up about three or four times a week.

The cafe at the other end town recently closed. "They were selling a hamburger for $8 dollars; I sell the same burger for $3 dollars," she said.

She rescued this 38-year-old restaurant last March. It was in foreclosure. Her husband told her to buy it.

The artwork on the wall was done by local students in the middle school's art class. She plans on having new, local art produced by the senior high school art class each year.

"Business is wonderful," she said.

Story and photo by Bruce Thorson

July 3, 2009, Imperial, Neb: Sid Harchelroad, along with his brother, owns Harchelroad Motors Inc. He received one of the "good" letters from General Motors. It said he gets to keep his dealership franchise.

According to Sid, his dealership is one of the top ten in the nation selling Corvettes. "I recently shipped one to Australia," he said, and about 75 percent of his Corvette sales are to Nebraskans.

The high-end price for a couple of these cars is about $175 thousand dollars.

About six years ago he sold three Corvettes. He ordered more and sold more; that trend has continued each year. He sold 161 new and used Corvettes last year. In addition, he hosts an annual Corvette Classic car show.

This year, August 16, he will host the 5th annual show. The first show attracted about 50 Corvettes and last year's show there were more than 240.

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