I hate rumors, so I sought out the truth—I can’t even count the number of people who mentioned the closing of the Aramingo Diner to me. It’s such an icon in the neighborhood, and the big fish stories that were flying around (including the rumored close date of Friday, March 21) needed either to be squashed or confirmed.
I stopped by unannounced last Thursday and was graciously met by longtime owner George and his daughter Kathleen.
First, let me say, through the 59 years that the Aramingo Diner has been here, just about everyone has eaten there. It was always, “I’ll meet you at the Aramingo.” It was the favorite spot after the bars closed, family breakfast after Sunday church, meeting place for lunch, comfort food for dinner and the place to get the best cheesecake. I can’t tell you how many cheesecakes I took somewhere or found graced on someone’s dinner table. This neighborhood legacy deserved more, I felt, than the nasty rumors that were flying around. For so many of us, we grew up waiting in line at the Aramingo.
Here’s the truth from George. When his father-in-law passed, George, then 23 years old, took the diner over. Now, 43 years later, he would like to retire. There was no given date. There have been talks with other restaurants, and there are concerns for his staff, some who have been there for years. A lot of emotions rest on his shoulders. He wants to do what is good not only for him and his family, but also for the neighborhood that supported him.
For now, squash the rumors, cause it’s business as usual at the diner, and when George decides to retire, he will retire. That’s the truth.
Patricia (Patti ‘Star’) Buzine is a Star advertising sales representative who lives in Port Richmond.