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Roadside explores the back road and Main Streets of America. Our recipe for an American renaissance: Eat in diners, ride trains, shop on Main Street, put a porch on your house, live in a walkable community.

Demolished!

ElginDiner008

The Elgin Diner was demolished early September, 2014. 

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That Little Place on Main
That Little Place on Main
Name: That Little Place on Main
Description:

Former Kristen's Cafe, former Little Falls Diner.


Type of Attraction: diner-prefab
City: Little Falls
State: NY
diner builder: O'Mahony
Vintage: c1926
preserved: 40
West Shore Diner
West Shore Diner
Name: West Shore Diner
Description:

Possibly the oldest Silk City extant. Serves breakfast and lunch. Mostly standard, rather tired menu of diner staples. Very run down.


Type of Attraction: diner-prefab
City: Lemoyne
State: PA
diner builder: Silk City
Vintage: c1935
preserved: 70
Tom's Diner
Tom's Diner
Name: Tom's Diner
Description:

Currently under restoration despite the fact that the Town of Ledgewood wants to condemn the property to clear the way for another convenience store. For more information, visit the Facebook page of the people rallying to save it. 

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Type of Attraction:
diner-prefab
City: Ledgewood
State: NJ
diner builder: Silk City
Vintage: c1937
preserved: 80

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The Diners of DelMar

  • Nautilus Diner towers above

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:53:50
    Steve Efstathiou looks like a dead ringer for a young Telly Savalas, minus the lollipop. He even shares the late actor’s trademark intensity and sense of humor. Setting aside the Greek stereotyping is a hard thing to do in the diner business, though, because Greeks run so many large diners, and their stories all follow a similar path. 
    Read More
  • The Tastee Diners: Islands in a sea of development

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:52:31
    The Tastee Diner chain stands as one of the holdouts from the diner’s golden age that saw not only some of the greatest designs produced by the industry, but a fairly common practice of expansion before the dominance of the franchise. The current owner of the chain, Gene Wilkes, did not start it, but he did rescue it. 
    Read More
  • Frank’s bakes the cakes to take

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:47:45
    Nearly twenty years have passed since Frank and Linda Davis finally opened the doors of their diner. Talking to them, it seems that they have forty years of experience in it. Projects such as these all start out with the highest of hopes, but the even the best laid plans can never account for the twists and turns in a business with so many variables. 
    Read More
  • Doyle's Diner gets ready for the future

    By Randy Garbin / 2014-09-10 12:42:07
    Mike Doyle is all business, but he's not averse to a tugging your chain as he gets to know you. Trouble is, his expression doesn't change much when he does it. For those meeting him for the first time, this can knock you a little off balance.  "How much are you going to pay me for all this information?" The man barely cracks a smile as he asks, belying the suggestion of a jollier presence thanks to his full head of white hair and portly demeanor. If he grew a beard, he could make a great Santa. 
    Read More

You Can Call It Al

Al's Diner in Shannock, Rhode Island

In a rare bit of diner move news with a happy ending, we learned this past month that the former Foster Street Diner, Worcester diner number 598, located in Peabody, Massachusetts has shipped to Shannock, Rhode Island. Its new owner Sandy Neuschatz plans a full restoration and has hired Richard Gutman as the project's consultant. Richard also serves as the director the Johnson & Wales Culinary Museum which is currently working to restore its own diner, the former Everready Diner.

The photo at right shows the diner now stripped of its long-time shingled covering displaying its former name. The 1928-vintage structure was moved by O.B. Hill Riggers of Natick, Massachusetts. Newspaper stories originally reported the involvement of the Imaginary Diner Museum, but Roadside has since learned that after some research, Mr. Neuschatz opted instead to hire someone with some actual credentials in diner restoration, and who runs an actual museum. Mr. Neuschatz also dodged another bullet by wisely rejecting Daniel Zilka's offer to "hold" a newly discovered frosted window original to the diner. Mr. Neuschatz plans to operate the diner in Shannock. No word yet on a timetable for his plans.

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