Weidmann's Progress

By: Stan Torgerson
By: Stan Torgerson

The most common question about the new Weidmann's Square is when will it open? Manager William McGehee says even he doesn't know.

"Not at this point, no," he said. "We just take each day as it comes and do what we can and work as hard and as fast as we can. We want to get open as soon as possible and when that day comes we'll all be excited about it."

August 2002 was the original target date. As part of the redesign, it appears the entrance has been moved but McGehee says that's not accurate.

"No, it's been brought back to the original, actually to the pre-1950s I believe, according to all the historical documents that we've found," said McGehee.

The restaurant contains 15,000 square feet and will seat 340.

"We have 130 in the main dining room. We have 50 in the bar plus barstools for 12. Then we have two banquet rooms which hold approximately 150, 160 people," said McGehee.

The Weidmann's of the future will be composed of three different buildings that were put together at different times. Some were built in different centuries. Most of the symbols of the old Weidmann's are gone, including the inscribed fireplace mantel and the giant cuckoo clock.

"We no longer own the mantle or the cuckoo clock nor the pictures," said McGehee. "When the pictures were sold, before they left the building we scanned them on a computer and there again, as money avails itself we're having those reprinted on fresh Kodak paper and reframed and we'll have some areas upstairs that will have some gallery areas."

We asked if he believes the public will accept the change in atmosphere from the Weidmann's that was to the Weidmann's that will be.

"Hopefully, once they sit down and have a meal, anything that we've done that's upset them will all be behind us," said McGehee.

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