Margie's Diner closes, but restaurant will reopen under new name - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Margie's Diner closes, but restaurant will reopen under new name

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A local San Luis Obispo landmark diner will close its doors after more than 31 years in business Sunday night.  

Large plates of home-style food drew customers from near and far, but it wasn't enough to keep Margie's Diner open.

"I love the music, I love the old-time pictures the staff -- and the crew they're always really friendly," Rieschelle Roberts said while sitting at the diner's counter. Roberts is a Margie's regular, visiting sometimes three times a week, and says she can't believe the diner is closing.  

"It'll be missed," she said.

"It was a Howard Johnson's before it was Margie's Diner and I worked here right out of high school," Mary Meserve-Miller said.  "I started right over there in the ice cream bar as a HoJo girl."

Meserve-Miller worked at Margie's through high school and while attending Cal Poly. She said she had to stop by for one more meal.  

"The burgers are fantastic, and they're huge. The shakes are awesome."

"One of my favorites is always the omelet with the mushrooms and the avocados. And, of course, the milkshakes," Jenny Villanueva said as she sat with her parents and sons.  

Villanueva, like many, has been visiting Margie's for years and continued to visit even after moving away. "We've had special occasions that we've brought kids to here, and so when we heard that they were closing we had to travel from Orcutt to come over here because we just are going to miss this place a lot," she said.

"This was the first restaurant that I went with my family so it was very exciting," Villanueva's son Kaleb said of his first trip to Margie's when he was 2 months old. Kaleb and younger brother Kaden already know the menu well. "I like to get the burger, it's really good. And the chocolate shake is awesome!"

KSBY asked the current owner of Margie's Diner about the closing. She gave us a statement that in part reads, "Closing is an extremely difficult decision but unavoidable for current ownership... my employees, vendors, and customers have all become 'family.' This is extremely difficult for all."

We spoke with the current manager of the diner, Juli Foster, Sunday morning and she said the restaurant has been bought by a new investor who plans to reopen under a new name. It'll take about three weeks for the restaurant to be cleaned and renovated before reopening.

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