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Hastings Dairy Queen preparing for new building

The Hastings Dairy Queen, located on Vermillion Street, will be closing a month earlier than usual this fall. And, by the time the store reopens in the spring, it will look much different.

Crews will demolish the existing building, which has been in use for 55 years, and begin work on a new facility.

When the new site opens in February, it will feature a drive-thru window and the Orange Julius line, well known for its smoothies.

"People don't realize this store has been here for 55 years," said Scott Jelley, one of the store's owners. "It's time for a new building and a new look. It's really going to expedite service, having a drive-thru. Some people just don't want to get out of their cars. They want faster service."

The new store will also have a front patio with tables and chairs.

Construction is expected to last approximately four months. Jelley said he hopes to have the new building operating by Valentine's Day 2008.

The store is usually closed for three months in the offseason.

Owners of the business are Scott and Vicky Jelley, Mark and Jane Gerry and Al and Kathy Plaisted.