Siblings Jen Rugh and Kevin Carpanini jumped into the world of restaurant ownership when Kevin stumbled upon the historic Front Range Inn -- located in Lakewood -- closed and for sale during the pandemic.
"My brother called me and my husband and said, 'Hey, you interested in buying a bar?'" said Rugh.
Jen has the food service experience and Kevin has business acumen to run it, but getting people to come to a bar that had been closed for an extended period of time was a tall task.
"There was a challenge of reopening something or getting the community to recognize that we were reopened," said Carpanini.
They knew their property was a jewel so they started looking for ways to make ends meet by utilizing their entire space.
"We have almost three acres of land that this restaurant sits on. So, finding things that could help us use the land to our advantage was really appealing to us," said Rugh.
That's when they heard about Harvest Hosts. A website that connects wineries, breweries and taverns with RVers looking for a place to park.
Owner Joel Holland says it's a win-win. Their members get a great place to stay and property owners get extra revenue.
"We tell our members, 'hey Front Range Inn is now part of the program,' we describe the property, 100-year-old, you know, bar and restaurant, really cool place. And immediately RVers will start visiting and patronizing the business," said Holland.
Kevin and Jen say Harvest Hosts has helped them not only earn extra money, but expose them to new customers.
"So on a on a slower night here at the restaurant, we have four RVs. That could average an extra 20 seats that get filled that night. So I mean, it makes a huge difference," said Carpanini.
for more features.