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Norris Beer Board OKs permit for new owner of Archer’s

With last week’s approval of a beer permit for its new owner, Archer’s Food Center in Norris has officially changed hands.

The sale was completed after Thursday evening’s vote by the Norris Beer Board in favor of the permit for Hitesh “Harry” Patel, who bought the store from longtime owner Wayne Chaniott.

The three Beer Board members who attended the meeting March 2 voted in favor of the permit. They were Mayor Chris Mitchell, Councilman Will Grinder and Councilwoman Loretta Painter.

Patel told The Courier News after the meeting that he does not plan to make any changes in the operation of the longtime downtown market, but will make some upgrades to the building.

The store also will have a new cash register that can scan drivers’ licenses to check automatically whether someone trying to buy alcoholic beverages is at least 21, he said.

Wayne Chaniott, who has owned the store for the past 40 years, has decided to retire, said his sister, Pam Higdon, who has been helping him in the store as he continues fighting cancer, Higdon said last week.

She said her brother is currently a resident at Meadow View Senior Assisted Living in Norris.

Norris native Charlie Murphy, who attended the Beer Board meeting with Patel, is the store’s new general manager.

Murphy said his work history includes stints as a store manager for Dollar General and Dollar Tree, and as a merchandising manager for Lowe’s Home Improvement.

“I’ve been involved with this family (the Chaniotts) my whole life,” he said Tuesday morning at the store.

Most of the store’s staff also will remain, including cashier Stacey Walker, who has been with Archer’s for 10 years, she said.

Higdon said that longtime meat manager Phillip Farmer is coming back from medical leave to continue running the meat department.

Chaniott bought Archer’s 40 years ago from the founder, George Archer.

The store is in the Norris Town Center complex at 27 W. Norris Rd.

The entire Town Center property, which also includes the Norris Post Office, was purchased recently by Starpoint Development, LLC., which is owned by lawyer Ameesh Kherani and his brother, Eddie.

Ameesh Kherani has a law office on Andersonville Highway in the same building as the Appalachia Family Dentistry practice of his wife, Dr. Sonia Kherani. He also has offices in Knoxville and Jacksboro.

Starpoint LLC and the Kheranis have no connection with the new Archer’s owner, other than leasing the building to them, Higdon said.