Dave's Popcorn is here to stay: New owners will stick with Mpls. tradition


South Minneapolis institution Dave's Popcorn has been sold a month after going on the market – and its new owners have vowed to keep it just the way it is.

The Star Tribune reports that the drive-in popcorn, carmelcorn and ice cream seller on E 38th St. has been sold for $95,000 to the Gray family, led by 38-year-old Andy – a pastor at nondenominational Christian church Urban Refuge – and his wife Laura.

The newspaper reports the family had attempted to buy it from former owners Andrew Neary and Sherri Shannon-Neary in 2012, but they weren't quite ready to sell up. This time round, they got their desire.

"I would have driven by for the next 20 years thinking, 'I wish I would have done that,'" Gray told the paper after noticing a Facebook post that said it was for sale. "We decided to take a leap of faith, and jump and see what happens."

Anyone concerned that new owners would mean major changes for the eatery that has served Minneapolitans since 1957 were allayed by a post from the Grays on its Facebook page.

"We're the new owners and you'll be glad to hear that we'll be carrying on 'In The Old Tradition of Dave's." The previous owners are doing a stellar job of training us in so you can enjoy the same fabulous popcorn and ice cream treats."

There was a message from the Neary family too, saying: "There were many interested buyers, but our priority was to sell to someone that would carry on the tradition."

CityPages reports that the Nearys had found it increasingly difficult to run the seasonal business while holding down other jobs.

The newspaper expressed delight that its new owners will keep it the way it is, after fearing "some hipster would buy it and turn it into a bulgogi taco shop."

It notes that Dave's Popcorn is one of the last remaining traditional drive-ins in the Twin Cities, though customers mainly walk up to the window to pick up their sweet treats.

The first announcement the new ownership made was some extended hours, with the shack now opening from 3-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, 12-9 p.m Friday and Saturday, and 1-6 p.m. Sundays.

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