After only a few short months of construction - 59 business days, to be exact -the Dawson County branch of Popeyes Fried Chicken is officially open to the public.
The restaurant held its ribbon cutting last Friday morning, drawing in several special guests, such as building owner National Restaurant Development Holdings President and CEO Aziz Hashim, Popeyes' U.S. President Ralph Bower as well as city and county officials.
"Thank you for allowing us to come to your city," Bower said. "We're very proud to be in Dawsonville."
According to Hashim, more than 40 jobs were created by the restaurant, 26 who were never employed.
"We are so proud to be here in this city," Hashim said. "Dawsonville is truly a pro-business town."
Bower had much to say to his new employees, including pep talks on how they, too, could climb the ladder in the food industry.
"I really look forward to everyone having great careers here," he said. "Nine out of 10 folks in restaurant management start off as hourly employees. This is one of the few industries where you can start at the bottom and end up owning the restaurant."
Dawsonville Mayor James Grogan was one of the city officials in attendance. While both Hashim and Bower thanked the city for allowing the restaurant to be built, Grogan said he had to give credit where it was due.
"I wish I could take credit for this, but I can't. Our county has put in more effort with this than the city has and I want to acknowledge them. It's a team effort," he said.
"It really does me good to see all of these new employees back here and know what you are working towards. It's a team effort that built this facility and it's a team effort that's going to keep it going."
The restaurant is at 429 Powder Center Drive, just north of the outlet mall. It is open from 10 a.m. to midnight Sunday through Thursday, and 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday.