Bernie's Barn restaurant has new owners

This article submitted by Linda Stelling on 1/20/98.

With the busy holiday season behind them, the new owners of Bernieís Barn are looking back to see what changes they need to make, to fine tune the operation.

On Oct. 1, Larry and Pat Hesse, Watkins, and Ed and Sheila Steineman, Madison, Wis., purchased Bernieís Barn from Dale Hennen, Paynesville. Their philosophy has been to provide good, consistent quality food and service to their customers.

ďWe didnít know what to expect starting in a new business. We want to gain the communityís support. Thus far, we appreciate the support we have been receiving. We just ask customers to give us a chance,Ē Ed said.

Ed is a native of Melrose and has worked 10 years as a supervisor in Goldín Plumpís distribution center and a year with Holt Products, a wholesale distributor, in Wisconsin. Ed is the general manager for their new business venture and is in charge of booking parties and banquets. We have 80 percent of the place booked for weddings this summer.Ē His wife, Sheila, ran a cleaning service out of their home in Madison. She is in charge of the dining room and waitresses. The couple has two sons: Matthew, 10 and Dylan, two and a half.

The other half of the ownership is Sheilaís parents, Larry and Pat Hesse, Watkins. Larry has been a truck driver for 20 years and is now in charge of maintenance at Bernieís Barn. He is also in charge of setting up the dining room for parties, serves as a backup bartender and helps where needed. Pat worked at Litchfield Garment 17 years and Hutchinson Technology three and a half years. She is in charge of the kitchen and is chief decorator. She is looking forward to doing some landscaping outside next spring.

One of the first things on their agenda, was to lighten and brighten up the interior of the place. ďThe barn look had its day but is outdated and needs to be changed,Ē she added.

They are planning a grand opening in March.

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