Did you ever wish growing up that you could be just like someone special that you looked up to and respected? This is how Anna Herschberger, now the owner of Yoder’s Kitchen, felt everyday while working with her mother. Anna was raised in a traditional Amish home and her mother served homemade meals to many customers thru her business, Miller’s Home Cooking. Anna loved working with her mother, being taught to cook and serve food, and meeting new people. While she was limited to only an eighth grade education due to her Amish upbringing, she learned more than she could have imagined from her mother.
As Anna became an adult, she knew she wanted to continue in the line of work her mother had taught her. In 1994, Anna began working as a waitress at Yoder’s Kitchen in Arthur, IL. Anna enjoyed putting her knowledge to work, as well as learning many new things about the restaurant business. In 2002, after 8 years of working in the restaurant, Anna came upon the opportunity to take a big leap and buy the business. This was a wonderful opportunity for Anna and her family and she was excited, yet nervous to take on this challenge. Anna’s oldest son, Daren Herschberger, was already working at Yoder’s Kitchen when she became the owner. Her younger son, Derrick Herschberger, would soon join his mother and brother to work at the restaurant as well.
Daren and Derrick were both raised working in the restaurant, learning many things from their mother, just as she did as a young girl with her mother. In the following years, the Herschberger’s expanded Yoder’s Kitchen, adding additional seating for the growing business, along with adding space to the bakery, and growing their ever so popular and unique gift shop. The Herschberger’s continued to operate a buffet-style restaurant, while also adding many menu items. Catering began to become more popular as well, with Yoder’s Kitchen now serving food at many banquets, weddings, and other large gatherings all around the area.
2016 began a project that Anna and her boys had been thinking about for a long time. More and more space seemed to be something that was always needed, and a 4,500 square foot addition was the solution. The new addition was lovingly named “The Porch” after memories from Anna’s time working with her mother. The expansion added an additional 85 seats to the restaurant, a designated carry-out entrance and service counter, as well as a second kitchen to service the carry-out and catering operations. The buffets and dessert bar in the original space were also improved and expanded for easier service of customers.
Anna Herschberger and her husband Nelson are still the current owners of Yoder’s Kitchen, with both of their sons, Daren and Derrick, working as managers in the restaurant. A great deal has changed since 2002 when the Herschberger’s purchased the restaurant. While the traditional, Amish home-style cooking will never change, Yoder’s Kitchen does continue to grow and expand to serve customers, both loyal & new.