One Day: Courtney Cline, Dairy Queen on Jane Trail in front of Walmart in Danville

Published 1:28 pm Tuesday, December 26, 2017

One day last week at Dairy Queen, customers were savoring ice cream treats, crunching on french fries and saying “hi” to friends. Machines were humming and buzzing and whirling milk shakes, and outside voices could be heard over the speaker ordering their meals.
And Courtney Cline was in the middle of it all, making sure everything was moving smoothly.
Cline has worked at Dairy Queen since she was 16 years old. “I’ve never been anywhere else,” she said. The Danville High School graduate, who is now 27 and a mother of two young boys, has been general manager of the restaurant for about six months.

(Photo by Robin Hart) As general manager of Dairy Queen in Danville, Cline doesn’t have an officer, but her work area has everything she needs.

Even though she had been a manager for a few years, being named general manager “has had a lot more to it than I thought,” she said. She thinks the toughest part is scheduling employees and working around their other commitments. She said she unloads the trucks when they deliver supplies. And she makes sure vendors are doing their deliveries and jobs correctly. Cline also fills meal orders and cleans work stations so other employees can keep on with their duties.
Cline said since McDonald’s just up the hill has been closed for rebuilding, Dairy Queen has been busier than ever. “I like staying busy. It can stay down for as long as they like,” she said.
A lot of people think working in the fast food industry is easy work, Cline said. “But it’s hard. Harder than it looks. It takes a team to set it up and get it out.” Plus, “It’s very frustrating when things start going wrong,” like when the freezer goes out or another machine quits working.
Cline said she’s glad she’s now general manager, but the downside is she no longer qualifies for any government assistance with child care. She said her sons, 5 and 7, are in school, and she has a wonderful lady who helps with the children. But child care is very expensive, and it costs her a lot more when school is out for winter break and summer breaks. But her sons’ caregiver helps her out with the payments.
“I’m not very interesting,” Cline said. She works like everybody else and has a family at home.
Cline lost her mother when she was a girl and it’s been her and her dad ever since. And with tears in her eyes, she talked about an older brother living in Nicholasville, and her younger brother who died just last year.
Then she brightened up and talked about her dad, who is living with her grandmother. He’s now working there at Dairy Queen as a cook. “I’m his boss!”

(Photo by Robin Hart)
When not helping fill orders or doing office work, Cline constantly cleans off all parts of the restaurant work stations.

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