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By Bill Freehling
Jake & Mike's owners plan a few changes
The new owners of Jake & Mike's in Fredericksburg plan to make the restaurant a little more upscale while keeping some of the same, popular menu items.
Keith and Desiree Jones bought the restaurant at 806 William St. from Erica Baardsen last week and signed a five-year lease to keep it at the same location. The Joneses are the restaurant's fourth owners.
The Joneses are renovating the space, repainting, replacing carpets, trim and some equipment. The Spotsylvania County couple expect to reopen Tuesday.
Desiree Jones will manage the restaurant. She has worked for more than two decades in the restaurant industry, including an 18-year stint as a training manager for McDonald's in the Richmond area.
Jones has long wanted to own a restaurant and sees Jake & Mike's as a great opportunity. Her husband is a financial consultant for Dominion Virginia Power and will remain there.
Jake & Mike's will serve lunch and dinner every day except Monday, but the Joneses plan to open seven days a week this spring.
Among the items they plan to feature are crab cakes, top-quality steaks and lamb shanks. Shanda Bledsoe, who has experience cooking at bed and breakfasts and private events, has been hired as chef while Desiree Jones focuses on hosting and management.
Most of the Joneses' staff are coming from the Young Life program, a Christian-based organization for teens that the couple's two sons participate in.
Stafford considering planning fee changes
Stafford might change the fees charged by the county Planning Department to review cluster subdivision concept plans.
Currently the county charges $1,975 plus $125 per lot to review cluster concept plans. There is also a 2.75 percent technology fee tacked onto the subtotal.
Fees add up quickly under that model for developers proposing cluster subdivisions with numerous lots. For example The Garrett Cos. recently paid $103,880 for a review of its proposed 793-home cluster subdivision in the Widewater area of North Stafford.
The new proposed base fee would be $250 plus $5 per lot, according to a legal ad that ran in Tuesday's Free Lance-Star. The 2.75 percent technology fee would remain. A new $400 utility review fee is also proposed.
Under that structure, for example, Garrett's application fee would have been nearly $100,000 less.