KANAWHA COUNTY, WV (WOWK) – The Kanawha County Commission has awarded $35,000 in funding to one of the owners of Dairy Winkle to help rebuild the business after a fire last month.

Commissioners say Kerry “Paco” Ellison and Jenny Ellison were presented with $25,000 in funding from ALLKAN, and $10,000 in funding from UKAN to restore their business. Dairy Winkle was destroyed by a fire that broke out on the morning of Jan. 11, 2023.

The Kanawha County Commission approved the funding at the Thursday, Feb. 2, 2023.

ALLKAN and UKAN are two local funds designed to help small businesses in Kanawha County and the Upper Kanawha Valley. The commission says the Ellisons applied for funding from both organizations to help get the Dairy Winkle back up and running.

After the fire, local residents told WOWK 13 News that the Dairy Winkle was much more than a restaurant, and that Paco is always finding ways to give back to the community. The commissioners say this is one of the reasons they want to give back and help Ellison rebuild.

“You know every time we’ve needed something in the Upper Kanawha Valley, Campbell’s Creek, Paco’s been there,” said Commissioner Ben Salango of Ellison’s community service.

“We’re going to take a chance on you because you’ve always taken a chance on the Upper Kanawha Valley.”

Kanawha County Commission to Kerry “Paco” Ellison

Just days after the fire, the owners said they hope to reopen at the beginning of the Summer or hopefully sooner.