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Barbecue chain Dickey's closes in Grand Forks

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The local Dickey’s Barbecue Pit closed over the weekend, leaving a vacant space at Grand Forks’ busiest intersection.

A sign in the chain restaurant’s door simply stated “We are permanently closed.” A post on the restaurant’s Facebook page last week said Dickey’s would close Saturday and combine with the location in Fargo.

“We wish the community the best, and will cherish the memories you have given us,” the post added. “Thank you for the opportunity to serve you!”

Dickey’s, located at the corner of South Washington Street and DeMers Avenue, came under new ownership late last year.

The Dickey’s building was home to a Hardee’s restaurant from 1974 and 2004 and then Mi Mexico from 2009 to 2011, according to Herald archives. That 2012 story referred to the adjacent intersection as the busiest in town, but drivers had to often wait to access the building’s parking lot.

The intersection is also the state’s busiest where two two-way roads cross without ramps or other junctures, according to the Grand Forks-East Grand Forks Metropolitan Planning Organization.

Dan Sampson, whose Omega Properties owns the Dickey’s building, said the business owners gave him a heads-up a week ago about their plans to close. He said he wasn’t sure why they were shutting their doors, but he had heard they had “employee problems,” as in trouble finding enough workers and having some of them show up for work.

Sampson said he’s not sure what will happen with the property.

“It’s a prime location in our city,” said Barry Wilfahrt, president and CEO of the Chamber of Grand Forks and East Grand Forks.

John Hageman

John Hageman covers North Dakota politics from the Forum News Service bureau in Bismarck. He attended the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities, where he studied journalism and political science, and he previously worked at the Grand Forks Herald and Bemidji Pioneer.  

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