Last week, Scruffy’s former owner Jodi Larson said goodbye to the restaurant industry and sold the business to new owners. Although this may be sad for some regular customers of the restaurant, Larson said that she was happy to return to her passion of working with children.
After summer break winds to an end, Larson plans on working at Hettinger Public School as a paraprofessional.
“I would call it bittersweet,” said Larson. “Before opening Scruffy’s with my husband, I worked in a preschool for 15 years and I’m just super excited to return to that.”
Even though Larson said she is excited to get back into working with children, she will miss a lot of the regular customers that she got to know at Scruffy’s.
“I’m going to miss those guys,” said Larson, “but you know, it’s a small town. I’ll see them around.”
Although the ownership is changing, Scruffy’s will continue to stay open. Scruffy’s new business owner, José Muñoz said that he intends on keeping the restaurants name.
“I like the name and I think everybody know it,” said Muñoz. “That’s why we will be keeping the same name and the same phone number.”
In addition to the same name, Munoz said that he intends to keep a lot of the same staff and food on the menu too.
Once they get established into the community, he said that he hopes to eventually start adding some Mexican food to the menu.
“People like the food so we will serve the same menu,” he said. “We will start with serving American food, but we plan on selling Mexican food too, because people are asking for it,”
In addition to Scruffy’s, Munoz owns a food truck in Dickinson, and has over ten years of experience in the food service industry. He said he hopes to add similar dishes to Scruffy’s menu.
“We would like to add burrito verde, chimchangas, and enchiladas. We have 45 items for the menu,” he said.
Jodi Larson said that ultimately, she is happy that the building will be utilized and still apart of the community.
“I’m glad that Hettinger isn’t losing a restaurant,” she said, “and there will be something both recognizable and new to take its place.”