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Dickey's in Hastings is under new management

Dickey's Barbecue Pit has a new owner. Cory Sessions bought the business Oct. 2.

Sessions owns another Dickey's in Woodbury, which will celebrate its first anniversary in mid-December. Opening a location in Hastings was one of his original goals, he said, but it didn't work out right away.

When the previous owners of the Hastings store decided to sell, Sessions stepped in.

"It was a win for everyone, I think," he said.

So far, everything's going well, he said. The night Sessions bought the business he kept it closed. He did some cleaning and reorganizing and opened the doors again the next day.

New ownership means a few changes for Dickey's. The store has new staff and hours will be more regular, Sessions said. The main focus will be on operating a clean restaurant, making quality food and providing good customer service, Sessions said. Next spring he plans to add drive through service.

Sessions hasn't always been in the food industry, but it's been a goal of his for many years.

Before opening the Woodbury Dickey's last year, Sessions worked for 26 years as a project manager at ADP, a payroll services company. Before that, he was a manager at a Wendy's restaurant for seven years and he's always been interested in food.

"I've always wanted to open a restaurant," he said.

Once his children went off to college, he decided to take the risk and go for it. It was his doctor who pointed him to the Dickey's chain. The doctor's nephew worked at a Dickey's, and the experience Sessions had when he visited the restaurant was good enough to win him over.

It's a lot of work, but work he enjoys, he said. He said he prides himself on being able to provide jobs and being part of a community.

"It has to be more than just owning something or an income," he said.

Sessions said he's looking forward to getting more involved with the Hastings community. The city reminds him of his hometown of Austin, he said, and the people he's met so far have been welcoming.

"I can't say enough about the people of this town," he said.

Dickey's is open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. Besides offering fresh-made barbecue fare in the restaurant, it also offers take-out and catering. Sessions said he will cater to a wide area, including Inver Grove Heights, Rosemount, Red Wing and Cottage Grove. The store also has a mobile food vendor truck, so Dickey's can bring food to special events like Rivertown Days.

Dickey's is located at 1316 S. Frontage Road. The phone number is 651-319-0389. For more about the Dickey's chain, go to