Gift Shop & Bakery
For 50 years, The Exit Restaurant and The Fent Family has been dedicated to ensuring that quality and the best customer service is being provided to every customer. It is that dedication and commitment, to not just our customers but to our community, that has allowed us to serve you and your family through the years.
The Exit Restaurnt in the1970's
In 1962 Lloyd "Shorty" and Florence Fent built the first Laundromat in Birch Run with 20 washers and 12 dryers. In 1963 Duane and Chuck Fent decided a coffee shop would go over big as the new Clio-Fenton Expressway (now known as I-75) was opening. So, on the July 4th weekend of 1963, Duane and Chuck opened the doors to the Exit Drive-Inn, complete with 10 counter stools and car hops to serve their customers. They started as a family business with many of the family members as employees. It wasn't long when they added an addition of 30 seats and the car hop services canceled. In February 1968, construction began to remodel and expand both Fent's Laundry and The Exit Restaurant. The doors were opened again on March 13th, but tragedy struck one week later when a fire destroyed both businesses on Monday, March 18th, 1968 at 4:00 am. Although there was a tremendous loss to Lloyd, Chuck and Duane, they maintained their enjoyment of business and once again construction of The Exit Restaurant began. In 65 days, due to help of friends, neighbors and family, the restaurant was built with the seating capacity for approximately 140 people.
In 1988, the two brothers, Chuck and Duane reorganized the business to make room for their families. Today, The Exit Motel, known as The Best Western, is owned and operated by Duane and his family. Chuck expanded The Exit Restaurant seating to over 200 and in 1989 opened Birch Run's Subway. Development was still in the makings when America's Best Value Inns & Suite's was constructed in 1991-1992. Unfortunately, Fent's Laundry Center had to close it's doors in 2007. Chuck's son Dennis is now the General Manager of The Exit Restaurant, and son David is the General Manager of Subway and America's Best Value Inns & Suite's. Hospitality has always been the goal of our business and we were all saddened by the loss of "Mr. Hospitality", our father Lloyd "Shorty" Fent, who passed away November 12, 1991. He instilled in each of his sons and daughter that everyone we meet is a friend and customer. Because we are proud of our businesses, we encourage you to visit each one to see what we have to offer.