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Jeannie and Mark Breshears are planning a new retail venture at the former Aunt Martha’s Pancake House.
SBJ photo by Wes Hamilton
Jeannie and Mark Breshears are planning a new retail venture at the former Aunt Martha’s Pancake House.

Retail venture planned at former Aunt Martha’s

Posted online

A Springfield couple plans to renovate the former Aunt Martha’s Pancake House into a retail shop selling furniture, garden goods, clothing and jewelry.

Jeannie Breshears said she and her husband Mark purchased the property in late 2017 for an undisclosed sum. They are now renovating the storied breakfast and brunch spot at 1700 E. Cherokee St. near the intersection of Glenstone Avenue and Sunshine Street. Breshears declined to disclose the name of the shop.

Aunt Martha’s closed in October 2015 after more than five decades in business.

“We decided to try to preserve the buildings because of the Aunt Martha’s legacy, rather than build new,” Breshears said of the site’s two structures. “So we’ve completely gutted both buildings. That’s as far as we’ve gotten now.”

She said the couple plans to meet with an unnamed contractor and architect early next week on a final plan that would determine project costs.

Adjacent to Glenstone Avenue, the buildings comprised about 2,500 square feet of commercial space, according to Greene County assessor records.

Doing business as Hatch Enterprises LLC, the couple haven’t yet developed a rendering for the space, said Breshears. She declined to disclose a project budget but said the renovations are substantial. The deed filed in November 2017 with the Greene County Recorder’s Office indicates Montclair Capital LLC financed a $360,000 note on the property.

“We’re basically taking both buildings down to the studs and changing the entrance,” Breshears said. “There’s complete renovation inside and out, putting in green space and sidewalks.”

Once completed, she said, the vision is to offer a “shopping experience for the community,” offering modern and industrial style lines. Breshears said a grand opening likely will be slated for September. She said the new retail business is working with Hook Creative LLC on branding.

Jeannie Breshears has experience as regional brand manager for Interior Systems Inc., and Mark Breshears has worked as plant manager for UnderCover Inc., according to their LinkedIn profiles.

The Aunt Martha's property offers several benefits for commercial business – including lore that singer-songwriter Willie Nelson visited Aunt Martha’s while in town in 2003.

“Just being on Glenstone, it’s definitely a major artery for retail business,” said Sperry Van Ness/Rankin Co. LLC commercial adviser Gerald Zamora. “In addition to that, this property had a lot of loyalty, based on its legacy.

“Aunt Martha’s is a brand that was extremely well known in its community. There’s a large community attachment to that property.”

Zamora said he worked on behalf of the property’s former owner, Montclair Capital, for which real estate agent and developer Mike Fusek is a principal. Zamora said he fielded an average of four calls per week from interested parties. He said the site originally was offered at a triple-net lease of $4,000 per month.

Former Aunt Martha’s owner Brenda Freeman had listed the property for sale at $469,700 in 2016, according to Springfield Business Journal archives.

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