By Rick Langenberg
Restaurant taking pro-community stand
Denny’s restaurant, one of the largest chain eateries in Woodland Park, has put the final touches on a new management/ownership reign, with a big emphasis on better service and more community involvement.
Last week, the Woodland Park City Council unanimously approved the transfer of a hotel restaurant (liquor) license for the Cooper Restauranteur and Consulting Group, the new operators of Denny’s. This represented the final stages of an ownership and management change that began last August, and culminated with last week’s action by the WP Council. Denny’s, which opened its doors in Woodland Park about five years ago, was previously operated and owned by the High Country Restaurant Holdings.
“We have a new management team and are making major improvements,” said Amanda Wolfgang, director of operations of Denny’s. “We really encourage people to try out what we have to offer.”
She cites the selection of a new general manager, with Cassandra Barron, an experienced member of the Denny’s corporation for more than a decade, who is quite familiar with the restaurant business. Barron is in charge of the restaurant’s current team of about 20 workers, including many new employees.
Some of the more immediate changes include a revamping of the bar/lounge area, with a new menu, regular discounts, drink specials and the arrival of live music.
And for the restaurant, Denny’s-goers can expect new improvements in service and special discount enticements. Plus, the restaurant serves the culinary tastes of a variety of customers from seniors to millennials to young kids. It also prides itself as being gluten-friendly and offers free Wi-Fi service.
In addition, the Woodland Park branch of Denny’s is taking a strong pro-community stand. Within the new few weeks, Denny’s plans to kick off a student of the week promotion, aimed at honoring special high school kids in the Teller County and lower Ute Pass area. This promotion could reach a grand finale in late spring with a special banquet and the awarding of a $1,000 prize or scholarship. Stay tuned for more updates in The Mountain Jackpot newspaper.
Denny’s also has become a sponsor of the Woodland Park High School basketball team, and is getting behind a variety of school and academic/activity programs.
“We really want to become involved in the community,” said Wolfgang, who is quite familiar with Woodland Park, having grown up in the area. “We want to recognize the achievements of our local students.”
She says the restaurant plans to open its doors more to teachers and school kids and even wants to offer “kid chef days,” aimed at making students more aware of the culinary industry. “We want them to see what is involved in running a restaurant,” said the Denny’s operations manager.
Denny’s has gained a reputation as a hub for a variety of community groups and gathering spots, and plans to continue this reputation with their new management team.
One of Denny’s prime assets is its stellar facility, offering a cozy bar/lounge area and a spacious dining section. The Woodland Denny’s facility, located in a great setting directly off Hwy. 24 at 100 Morning Sun Drive, previously served as an Italian eatery and family restaurant, prior to getting turned into a Denny’s outlet.
It always has been regarded as a comfortable eating spot. But more improvements are in store at Denny’s, promise the new managers.
“We plan to make a lot of improvements in the bar area,” said Barron, the personable manager who actually boasted a career as a stand-up comic before getting involved in the restaurant business.
They plan to debut live music in the bar/lounge area at certain times during the week and roll out a new menu for the bar/lounge customers.
The Denny’s bar/lounge area is known as an ideal setting for having meetings and watching sports games.
And as for food, Denny’s makes no pretentions that it offers pancakes that are worth dying for. In fact, its new buttermilk pancakes are touted as “fluffier, tastier and better” in the latest version of the Denny’s menu. “Everyone has to try our pancakes,” said Wolfgang.
However, the restaurant specializes in a wide variety of food items. “People really like our food. We offer something here for virtually every type of customer,” added the operations manager.
Denny’s features more than 50 entrees, with breakfast, lunch and dinner items. It also has a popular senior (55-plus) menu and a value menu. Its entrees range from extremely heathy salads to deluxe steaks.
Denny’s also has special discounts such as burger nights, with amazing milkshake specials. And on Tuesday and Saturdays, kids eat for free from 4 to 10 p.m. with the purchase of an adult meal.
For more information about Denny’s call 719-686-6464, or visit them on facebook, twitter and other social media sites.