Diner Duo Preserves History

06/14/2017
North Main Street Diner- Owner Change.jpg
 Article by Emeline Rodenas | KPC News | June 12, 2017 
 
AUBURN — For Amanda Allen and Alicia Price, ensuring that a piece of Auburn’s history remains was a high priority.
 
That’s what inspired the pair to get together and purchase the Northway Diner on North Main Street.
 
Allen and Price know each other from high school and graduated together in 1997. Price was born and raised in Auburn, while Allen moved to the city later in life.
 
Both developed a love for the city. Allen worked at the diner as a waitress at one point.
 
“I applied a couple times, but there were no openings then. On the third try, there was an opening, and they eventually hired me. At that point, I had another job already, so I worked only Friday nights and Saturday mornings. The situation eventually changed, and I started working at the diner full-time after that,” Allen said.
 
When the previous owner, Tammy, decided to put the diner up for sale, the pair wanted to make sure loyal customers still had a place to go.
 
“About a year before we purchased it, Tammy used to joke with me about being the owner one day. Each time, I’d look at her and say, ‘No way,’” Allen added.
 
The diner opened again for the first time last week, but not without weeks of effort to renovate, repaint and redecorate it.
 
“We want to take people back in time. It has a retro 1950s style with a mix of ’60s and ’70s decor,” Allen said.
 
The new decor on the wall includes old records and road signs. The light green-blue coloring on the clapboard-style wall is reminiscent of the 1950's, as is the contrasting bright red of the seats and the stark black on the legs of the tables, stools and counter.
 
Most of the changes made to the building were on the exterior. None of them could have been completed though without the help of Auburn locals.
 
“We had regular customers like Frank Pulver, Don Price, Beverly Stahl, Russel and Grant Jordan, Brandon Bishop, Jim Delventhal, Billy Magg, Justin Klink, Al Berry and even our four new employees pitching in to help from dawn to dusk,” Allen said
 
The two decided to keep the menu mostly the same, and added only a few items. 
 
“It’s the same menu, same product,” Allen said.
 
There will be classic lunch and dinner specials such as pulled pork sandwiches, Coney Island hot dogs and, of course, pies.
 
“For now, we will have apple or cherry pies that people will even be able to take home if they want,” Allen said.
 
Looking back at the building’s history, Allen smiles.
 
“It’s really a place like no other, a unique little diner. It feels like family. At one point, it was a bake shop and a car hop,” she said.
 
Many regulars would come to the diner every Friday night for a family meal, so when it closed down, the loss was felt.
 
“We hope to be open Thursday and Friday evenings as well as Sunday mornings once we get fully staffed, ” Allen said.
 
Though the name of the building will change to North Main St. Diner, the history within it will remain, hopefully for years to come.




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