FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — As rumors swirl about whether Powers Hamburgers will remain open, the owners said fans of the famous Fort Wayne sliders do not have to worry.
“Most of them, they know us and they know it’s not true,” said Gloria Hall, manager and “boss” of Powers and wife of owner Michael Hall. “We still have it and [we are] still going strong.”
However, big changes could be coming to Powers in the near future.
The Halls told WANE 15 Friday the two are about to start the process of putting Powers up for sale.
Michael said it will probably be a few months before the restaurant hits the market, and they both said they will wait for the right person and the right opportunity before they actually sell Powers.
“[To] whoever we sell it to: we want to keep it Powers,” Gloria said.
The Halls said the next owner will need to understand the history of Powers and its importance to Fort Wayne.
“I don’t want anything to change,” Michael said. “Powers is Fort Wayne.”
The Halls have been around Powers for a long time, with Gloria being with the restaurant in some capacity for 46 years and Michael being the owner of Powers since 1999.
“This has been my life since I graduated,” Gloria said.
Although the Halls still enjoy Powers and its customers — some of whom broke down in tears when the Halls told them of the potential sale — they believe it is time for something different.
“I’m just getting older and it’s just getting harder to do this job. It’s really fast-paced too,” Gloria said. “I love my customers [and] that’s why I’m still here, but I’m getting older and having health issues, so I’d rather pass it off to someone younger and keep it going.”
Some regulars are already clamoring and asking to be the one to get Michael’s last burger off the grill.
Even though those changes have not taken place yet, Gloria said the rumor mill has been churning for months about Powers for a variety of reasons.
Powers recently had to close down for about a week due to its storage cooler breaking down, and Gloria said its common for the restaurant to either open late or close early due to lack of staffing.
“We all just have to pull together,” Gloria said. “We don’t like having to close or not be open, but it just is what it is I guess.”
One rumor the Halls often hear from customers involves the City of Fort Wayne buying out Powers, but the Halls told WANE 15 the only time the city has reached out about potentially buying the restaurant happened around 2007 during the construction of Parkview Field.
The Halls, though, said it was an “informal” inquiry, and they believe city officials do not want to buy or replace Powers because they understand its importance.
Despite staffing issues, Gloria said Powers is “still going really strong” when the restaurant is open, and the Halls plan on doing everything they can to keep the restaurant at the corner of Harrison and Brackenridge streets.
Whether they are the owners or not.