BANGOR, Maine — Back in 1990, the corner of outer Broadway and Griffin Road was a vacant field. For the past 22 years, it’s been known as the home of a locally owned and operated restaurant, gas station, coffee shop, banquet facility and convenience store.
As of Dec. 18, Kev-Lan Restaurant and Convenience Store will go from the control of one Bangor family to another as Dysart’s buys the mammoth travel stop and gas station from the wife and daughters of Bangor entrepreneur Bud Grant.
“I feel very fortunate that if I myself can’t be here to work anymore, we’re very lucky to be able to turn this over to another local family to be locally owned and operated,” said Cheryl Noyes, general manager and one of the owners of Kev-Lan.
Noyes, who has owned the business along with sister Gale Longo and mother Bette Grant, said it seemed like the right time to curtail her six-days-per-week work schedule.
“This is retirement for us,” said Noyes, who remodeled the business about 18 months ago while expanding the restaurant and contracting the convenience store. ”My family wanted me to get done because of some health issues, and I’m 63.”
Noyes and Cary Weston, partner at Sutherland Weston Marketing, the public relations firm for Dysart’s, confirmed the official date of the changeover as Dec. 18. Neither would disclose the purchase price.
“It all basically came about the last few months,” Noyes said of the deal.
Dysart’s currently operates eight travel stops in Maine. Kev-Lan, which opened in December, 1991, will be the second-largest among them, after the Cold Brook Road location.
“The building is a tremendous asset and one of the discussions they’re having is what to do with it and how to move forward,” said Weston. “Dysart’s is always interested in adding businesses and expanding to become more competitive as well as reinvest in the community.”
The business — named for Bud Grant’s grandsons Kevin and Landon — currently employs about 20 full-time and part-time employees.
“At the moment, both the employees and business models are all on the table and there’s no definitive answer as to whether to expand or keep operations as they are,” said Weston. “That’s fluid and flexible, as they’re still evaluating the business, and looking at adding new services and products.”
Noyes, who worked for her father at Broadway Furniture and Grant Mobile Homes before coming to Kev-Lan on a “temporary” basis, said Kev-Lan already had a working relationship with Dysart’s, which has been supplying gas for the pumps for at least the past 10 years.
“It’ll be in good hands. I know they’ll do a good job,” said Noyes. “They have a lot more resources and experience than I’ll ever have.”
Dysart’s began with a trucking business in 1920 before David Dysart opened the first truck stop on Hammond Street in Bangor in 1934. It remained on Hammond until 1958, when it moved to Brewer, and eventually relocated to its current location on Cold Brook Road in Hermon in 1966.