By Annie Savage
As of February 16, the new owners of the Granite Bar and Grill, formerly the Last Chance Saloon, have officially taken over.
Nathan Bender and Van Bot both grew up in Grenfell, and jumped at the opportunity take over a business in their home town.
"We're just two local boys and we wanted to come back. I was in the oil field in Alberta and had enough of that. It was time for a change, so I came home."
The decision didn't take much thought, as the two men, who have been friends for years, quickly decided that it would be worth a shot.
"We were sitting down at the lake this summer and found out the bar was for sale and we kind of looked at each other and said, 'Want to try it?' and proceeded from there," Bot said simply.
"I've always wanted to come back at some point, but when I left Grenfell there was just nothing around, there was no work," he recalled.
Plans are already in the works to make numerous changes to the establishment.
"We plan on opening up the restaurant and being able to serve a meal out of the restaurant and beer on the other side," Bot explained. "We purchased all the ice cream equipment, so we might open that up, too."
They are also discussing various other renovation plans, but nothing is set in stone as of yet.
"We would like to change some things, it's just a matter of time and money. We'll see how things go," Bot said.
He admits that, for the most part, he is pretty much learning as he goes at the moment.
"I've never done this before, so I'm really running around with my head cut off right now," Bot laughed. "Luckily we've got good staff, so they're helping out. We'll figure it out."
He is already finding it enjoyable, however, despite the stress that inevitably comes with any new business endeavor.
"It's neat - it's a social job. I like it so far."
They've already added one additional staff member to the mix, and are looking at potentially adding more in the future.
"We'll be looking for high school students, for waitresses - give people some work."
The Granite Bar holds its official grand opening on April 10, but the new owners haven't yet decided exactly what the celebration will entail.
"We're going to give away a trip and some prizes," Bot added.
Many of the details, such as future plans for entertainment, are still up in the air, but they've already agreed on a few different things.
"We'll have bands, we want to get a hypnotist in, and some karaoke," Bot said.
The Last Chance Saloon was previously owned by Brian and Corinne Beutler.