THAYER -- Local businessman Bob Crase has purchased two familiar businesses in Thayer and hopes to have the doors open to the motels in the near future.
Bob and Linda Crase, owners of Mammoth Spring Tobacco, purchased the Tally Ho and Hill Top motels in early March. Both motels are located on Highway 19 in Thayer and have sat empty for the past three years.
Crase said Ed Smith, who managed the Tally Ho for eight years, will manage the businesses and is also helping with the renovation of the businesses.
The last company to own the Tally Ho was Southern Comfort, owned by Richard and Phyllis King, who had a contract with the railroad for railroad personnel to stay at the motel when the train would lay over in Thayer. Crase said Southern Comfort lost the railroad contract and the motels never rebounded.
There are 25 units at the Tally Ho and 19 at the Hill Top Motel. The Tally Ho also features a swimming pool that Crase said he hopes to have operating by the summer season. The Hill Top features a restaurant that Crase said at this time he is not going to open, but has the option to rent the restaurant to someone.
He said the public response to the refurbishing of the two motels has been great. "These two businesses being closed for three years has taken a lot of money out of Thayer. The city has been helpful during the entire process of purchasing the two businesses. I would like to thank Thayer Mayor Allen Deckard for his interest and support," Crase said.
The business owner said he hoped to have the motels up and running in three weeks.
The Tally Ho was first opened in the 1950's by Doc and Dorothy Ellis, with the Hill Top opening the following decade by local businessman Ronald Shipp.