WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — To say the past few years have been hard on local businesses would be an understatement.
Beginning in March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting shelter-in-place orders saw many locally owned and operated businesses barely survive.
But COVID-19 closings would prove to be just the beginning, as the ripple effects of a historic wave of inflation continue to be felt across the country.
Sadly, many local businesses didn’t make it and closed their doors for good in 2022.
One such establishment was the Rodriguez Tortilla and Tamale Factory, which closed its doors in October after standing for nearly 75 years.
Another was the Archer County staple, The Windthorst Sausage Company and Windthorst Fine Meats, which spent 47 years serving the Windthorst community.
Just down the road, in Scotland, Thad & Paisley’s shut their doors in May after a decade. Many locals may know them for serving favorite dishes from The Rangel’s previous Wichita Falls establishment, Freddy’s Casa Manana.
Also closing its doors in 2022 was La Michocoana, the Mexican and Latin specialty meat market. Customers said this one-of-a-kind market would be a huge loss.
“The products they sell here, you can’t find anywhere else,” Claudia Montoya, a customer at La Michoacana said.
Some local restaurants closed this year after opening within the past few years.
Both of these restaurants opened in 2020, as did one of the most popular barbecue joints to ever call Wichita Falls home. Jordan Craft Barbecue, the food truck-turned-restaurant, opened just two years ago on Seymour Highway.
After relocating to Old Iowa Park Road in late 2021, the restaurant closed for good in May.
The High Dive wasn’t the only bar that shut down this year, however. The popular whisky bar and club, Whiskeyta, located right off Lawrence Road, closed its doors this year as well.
It wasn’t just local establishments. Large retailers also made the move from Wichita Falls this year. Bed Bath and Beyond in Quail Creek Crossing announced its closure in August, and though they remain open for the time being, its departure from the city is imminent.
And, perhaps the most memorable, controversial closing of them all, one of Sikes Senter Mall’s original anchors, national department store Dillard’s, closed its doors for good after a series of mixed messages. This was just one major retailer to announce its departure from the mall in recent years.
That brings the number of closures in Texoma this year to at least 10, and while these community staples will certainly be missed, a new President and CEO at the Wichita Falls Chamber of Commerce brings hope of new businesses as Wichita Falls and the surrounding areas look ahead to the new year.