Buc-ee’s is a huge travel center with an iconic beaver mascot and a cult following. The Texas-based company has slowly begun debuting spots in Florida. They currently operate one in St. Augustine, and another in Daytona Beach. A third Sunshine State location is on the way as the company has revealed they plan to open a massive new travel center in Ocala, east of Interstate 75 near W. Hwy 326.. The news was first reported by WFTV in Orlando.
The new Central Florida Buc-ee’s facility will have an 80,000-foot building, 120 gas pumps, 28 EV parking spaces, 750 general parking spaces, and a 125-foot tall pole with a sign on it. What makes Buc-ee’s such a phenomenon?
For starters, their iconic and super sweet beaver nuggets (caramel popcorn). The travel station also serves up Texas-style brisket sandwiches, tons of fresh jerky and drinks. Buc-ee’s also has a deep collection of t-shirts, hats, blankets, and mugs all featuring the iconic mascot. The shop also includes sweets such as sugared nuts, dippin’ dots, and fudge.
Howstuffworks breaks down the early days of the travel center empire. “Buc-ee’s is the brainchild of Arch Aplin III. He and his business partner Don Wasek opened the first location in 1982 in Clute, Texas,” writes Lauren David. “It was about 3,000 square feet (278 square meters). Three years later, they opened the second Buc-ee’s — this one was 6,000 square feet (557 square meters). And things just kept growing from there (in size and numbers).”
The state of Florida is no stranger to top tier bathrooms. Our own Tampa International Airport is said to have the best public restroom in America. Buc-ee’s, in turn, has been said to have some of the cleanest bathrooms in America. Lauren David writes that according to Texas Monthly “the 56,000-square-foot (5,202-square-meter) Bastrop, Texas, location has 71 toilets and urinals and a team whose only job is to clean them 24 hours a day.”
A full construction timeline and opening date is still TBA.
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