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New owner: Meadow Muffins to be 'spruced up,' not completely changed

       It won't be Hatch Cover 2, but it may be Meadow Muffins, the sequel.
       In any case, the concept is not to make the unique, 35-year-old Old Colorado City restaurant/bar totally unrecognizable when it reopens late this year under new ownership.
A time-honored Michael Garman character seemed to be considering the offer on a business-promotion sign held up by a Meadow Muffins employee outside the Old Colorado City restaurant/bar in 2010.
Westside Pioneer file photo
       Rob Hirt, who has run the Hatch Cover restaurant in the Cheyenne area for 13 years, is the new tenant for the 10,000-square-foot space at 2432 W. Colorado Ave. He bought the business from Todd Delahanty, who had been its principal owner since 2008. Delahanty closed its doors Sept. 4, leaving a big “so long” sign in the window.
       “I have no intention of making it a Hatch Cover 2, but to provide a spruced-up Meadow Muffins, with good products and fun,” Hirt said.
       Some renovations will be necessary, but the restaurant will reopen “no later than Dec. 1,” he predicted.
       Several of the movie paraphernalia that gave the restaurant its eccentric charm have already been sold by the previous owners and others will be. However, Hirt said that some historical pieces will be preserved, such as the main bar, a wagon hanging from the ceiling and the large nude painting in the main room, which purportedly portrays famed Colorado City madam Laura Bell.
       Hirt will implement one key policy change: The new restaurant will have waiters and waitresses come to the tables, rather than requiring people to place orders from grill cooks or bartenders, as had been the Meadow Muffins way.
       He said no changes are planned to the rear area's unusual layout, which includes a recessed floor along with an upper mezzanine and a room on one side that's accessed by a short set of stairs.
       “It's an opportunity to offer the neighborhood a place like it was, only better,” summarized Hirt, who is finalizing his “Muffins” upgrade with the help of his wife Susan. “We're not trying to change the world or take anything from the community, but to make it cooler, a place where you can be comfortable having a meal or a beer. It just needs a little love. Let me rephrase that - a lot of love.”
       Since 1979, Meadow Muffins has taken up the first floor of the three-story Waycott Building, a historic brick structure that dates back to about 1890. According to Berry Craddock, a long-time local developer and the building's owner since 2003, the restaurant was originally part of an ambitious theme-chain restaurant vision by two pilots who went around the country buying movie items at auctions and antique stores.
       Craddock was also the original owner and manager of the Hatch Cover (opened in 1975). As such, he has known Hirt for years. This allowed him to act as an intermediary in the sale between Hirt (who was interested in starting a second restaurant) and Delahanty (who was looking to sell).
       About eight years ago, Craddock remodeled the Waycott's second and third floors for lofts. With Hirt doing “tenant improvements” inside the building in the coming months, Craddock said his company will paint on the outside.

Westside Pioneer article
(Posted 9/5/14; Business: Changes)

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