Golden Eagle Inn

    • ss saint francis golden eagle inn
Connie Clark and her family were very interested in reopening the Golden Eagle Inn in Downtown Bedford. It had been closed for the past few years as the owner was having health issues. Connie found out that the business was up for sale and she and other family members decided to take a look at possibly purchasing the business. They felt that their different skill sets would be a good match to manage the business. Connie has a background in customer service and customer relations, while her sister and brother-in-law both have experience in managing restaurants and bars. Her mother would also be available to assist with anything that would need done through the day.
 
The building was built in 1794 and is one of the oldest buildings in Bedford. It is also on the National Register of Historic Places. The building had been renovated in the early 1990’s by the owner and was in excellent shape. As a side note, the owner of the business was also an Small Business Development Center client during that time period. There is also a hotel liquor license that would be purchased as part of the deal. The plan is to serve alcohol in the restaurant, while reopening a small pub in the basement of the building. In early 2013, they decided that now was the time to move forward with their idea. Connie contacted the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce as well as Altoona First Savings Bank to open discussions about the purchase. Both of them referred her to the Small Business Development Center  for assistance.
 
On February 13, 2013, the Saint Francis University Small Business Development Center (SBDC) met with Connie, her sister Mary Jane Helsel and brother-in-law Tom Helsel to discuss the possible purchase of the business. The SBDC explained to Connie what information we would need in order to assist her in completing the business plan and projected financial statements. The bank felt that Southern Alleghenies may be able to look at financing a portion of the project through the Small Business First program. The goal was to show lenders that they were committed to this business and that each person would have a specific role in the business. They were also willing to invest their own cash into the project. The goal was to be open by late summer so they could take advantage of local events such as the Bedford Fall Foilage Festival.
 
The SBDC assisted Connie in preparing a business plan, three year projected income statement, balance sheet, statement of cash flow and a detailed narrative explaining how she arrived at the projected figures. Upon completion of her business plan and projected financial statements, she presented the package to Altoona First Savings Bank as well as the Southern Alleghenies Planning & Development Commission.
 
On September 18, 2013, Connie informed the SBDC that the financing for her project was approved. She was approved by Altoona First Savings Bank for a $200,000 term loan, Southern Alleghenies $120,000 through Small Business First and invested $80,000 cash. Connie remains employed and works the business on evenings and weekends. Mary Jane and Tom live at the inn and are in charge of the day to day management of the business. The reaction of the local community and travelers has been very positive.