For the love of the game

A banner remembering the life of Dave Walters hangs over the entrance to Dave’s Chevron in 2016.

Andy McAnally owns another Pendleton hot spot — Dave’s 12th Street Food Mart.

McAnally also owns Big John’s Pizza and Mac’s Bar and Grill, each a few blocks from the popular fuel station and convenience store at 220 S.W. 12th St.

Dave Walters, a 1966 Pendleton High School graduate, founded Dave’s. He started in the fuel-and-convenience-store business in 1972 at another location in Pendleton with his father.

He and his wife Toni Walters moved the business in 1992 to 220 S.W. 12th St. where it remains. Dave retired in 2011, and Toni took on managing the business. Dave Walters died suddenly in December 2016 while vacationing in Mesa, Arizona, where he spent winters. Toni Walters died in July 2018.

Jerrod “JJ” Spriet of Trustime/LaSalle St. Securities is the executor of the Walters’ estate. Spriet in a written statement explained one of the reasons McAnally was interested in Dave’s was its location between his two other establishments and their close proximity.

McAnally was negotiating with Toni Walters to buy Dave’s when she became ill, according to Spriet, but they did not reach a deal. McAnally is a “great operator” of Pendleton businesses, Spriet stated, “and he understands what Dave’s has meant to this community over the years as a friendly, convenient spot that is known for top-notch service.”

McAnally in the announcement said his vision for Dave’s is similar to when he purchased Big John’s Pizza.

“Big John’s was a well-known hometown brand when I purchased the business and the same is true with Dave’s,” he stated. “I want to continue building the brand that Dave and Toni created, and get Dave’s back to the customer service standards they demanded daily.”

McAnally also reported he plans to introduce self-serve frozen yogurt and new deli items at Dave’s, offer Big John’s pizza by the slice and update the coffee bar. He said the goal is to give customers a reason to visit more often. He also promised to keep up the Walters’ tradition of customer service.

“The Walters went out of their way to provide an extra measure of service at the pumps,” according to McAnally, “and that’s what customers came to expect.”

McAnally with Doug Corey created the Pendleton Whisky Music Fest on the Round-Up Grounds, across the Court Avenue from Dave’s.

The pair in 2018 won the Pendleton Chamber of Commerce President’s Award at the First Citizen’s banquet, and this year the event won the chamber’s Tourism Award.

Spriet stated the exact terms and conditions of the sale were not available. McAnally owns the property at the pizza restaurant and the sports bar, according to Umatilla County property records. There is no official word on if he also bought the property with Dave’s. McAnally is set to take over the business in March.

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