It’s been fifteen years since Tricie Scholer and her husband Jan opened Wild Wing Cafe on Washington Road. The bustling restaurant truly is a family affair, with son Daniel the general manager and another son, Will, the assistant general manager.
Daniel and Will have done such a good job running the almost 10,000 square foot restaurant, the Scholers have had the opportunity to focus on more than the day to day operations. A year ago they began knocking around the idea of a second location in Columbia County, eyeing the incredible growth and opportunity out west. Fast forward to today and the foundation is being poured on their new baby, Wild Wing Café in Grovetown.
Located on Lewiston Road adjacent to the Kroger, the new restaurant will be a whopping 8,066 square feet-almost as large as the Augusta location. Same as in Augusta, the Grovetown Wild Wing is on I-20, almost exactly ten miles from the Washington Road store. The foundation is being poured this week, with the projected opening date around May/June.
“We’ll be done in five months” says Derrick Lott of DCS, the General Contractor for the project. “We’ve built about thirty Wild Wings all over the southeast, so we’ve got it figured out.”
This isn’t the family’s first foray into operating a second location. They took over an underperforming Wild Wings Café in downtown Athens in 2006, enamored by the beautiful downtown location and mass of hungry students. They soon realized, however, a university town restaurant staffed with university town students meant a lot of wings and beer being gifted to friends. And that beautiful downtown location? “We had six parking spaces” says Daniel, chuckling. “It was great on game day though!” Trice chimed in.
They pulled the plug in 2011 and refocused all their energy on Augusta.
Son Daniel will oversee both locations and his brother Will will be moving into the GM role on Lewiston Road. Daniel says the synergy between the two locations will have a positive impact on operations. “We’ll be able to shuffle staff from one to the other as needed” he noted.
While Columbia County has seen an explosion of new franchise restaurants popping up in the past year, none are of the same scale of a Wild Wing. Located within a couple of miles of both Patriots Park and Blanchard Woods, families in town for the many large sports tournaments Columbia County hosts will now have an option nearby that can handle a crush of hungry players and families at once.
“We really feel good about the location. It’s 10 miles from where we are now so we don’t feel like will be competing with ourselves. It’s no secret what’s happening in Grovetown and we are excited to be a part of it.” Tricie said.