By Travis Mounts
CHENEY – While Benny’s Burgers and Shakes has a new owner, customers won’t see much difference.
That’s by design, according to new owner Chelsea Hunt. She took over the longstanding burger stand on Feb. 3, purchasing it from the Albers family.
This is not her first venture into owning a business or the food industry.
“My family has always run businesses. This is what I’ve always done,” she said. She and her cousins have owned the Papa Murphy’s in McPherson for 15 years, and she previously owned a small-town bar and grill.
Hunt moved to Cheney about a year ago, and quickly became a regular customer at Benny’s.
“I’m not looking to change anything right now,” she said, noting the business has been very successful. “I always eat at Benny’s and I’ve never had anything I didn’t like.”
The location served as a convenience store for many years. It found new life as a restaurant, opening under the name Cardinal Corner. When the Albers family took over, it was renamed
Benny’s in honor of Benjamin P. Cheney, a stockholder in the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway whom the city was named after.
Hunt quickly started putting down roots here, and is now engaged to Cheney native Gage Scheer. She also has a first cousin who lives in town. Hunt splits her time between Benny’s and Papa Murphy’s, normally working three days a week at each location.
“I just love Cheney. I’m from a small town. It’s safe and I have a lot of good friends,” she said.”I’m excited to be here at Benny’s.”
Customers are still seeing the same faces they’ve become accostomed to. Raelene Miller has been the manager since Benny’s opened eight years ago, and Kathleen Nixon has been her assistant for six years.
Benny’s Burgers and Shakes is located at 610 N. Main in Cheney. Call 316-542-9934 or visit their Facebook page.