BARSTOW • One Barstow Kentucky Fried Chicken will likely reopen sometime soon as a Church's Chicken and another remain closed, according to the longtime manager for both restaurants.

Barstow KFC locations at 512 East Main Street and 2785 Lenwood Road both closed for business within the past two months. Greg Silva, manager for both locations, said the owner of the restaurants was unable to negotiate a new contract with KFC for reasons unknown to him.

Silva said the Main Street location will "very likely" reopen as a Church's Chicken within the next month, and that he recently arrived back from two weeks of training at Church's in Las Vegas. The Lenwood location didn't generate the as much sales as the Main Street location and will likely remain closed, he said.

A total of 30 employees worked at Barstow KFC restaurants, and Silva said all former KFC employees are welcome to apply for jobs at Church's.

Silva — who managed Barstow KFC operations since 1979 — said the Lenwood Road restaurant opened in 1986 and the Main Street location has been in operation since the 1960s. Silva said he expects Barstow residents to be receptive to Church's, which features fried okra and fried jalapeño peppers in addition to fried chicken and traditional side items.

The nearest Church's Chicken is located in San Bernardino. The first Church's Chicken opened in San Antonio, Texas in 1952. As of March 2010, there are 1,700 Church's locations in 22 countries with sales of $1.2 billion, according to the company's website.

The owner of the former Barstow KFC locations could not be reached by phone Tuesday afternoon.

Contact the writer:
(760) 256-4126 or adome@desertdispatch.com