Country Cupboard serves diners for the last time

Andrea Amu made sure to be first in line for the last day for dinner at the Country Cupboard in Lewisburg.

Amu, from Middleburg, saw other cars in the parking lot but no one gathered outside the front door. She jumped out of the vehicle at 7:29 a.m. and started the line, which would eventually stretch across the parking lot through rows of cars.

“I always came here as a kid and grew up in the area and always loved coming here,” Amu said. “We like their breakfast buffet so just wanted to come over for a last breakfast. It’s sad. It’s sad for the neighborhood. »

Saturday marked the last day for the Country Cupboard dining room. Gift shops will close on February 26.

Amu came with her husband Mugi Amu and their neighbors David and Laura Walter.

“It’s a sad day for the region,” said David Walter. “This is where all the families gather.”

“You always walk in and the staff are friendly,” Laura Walter said. “We will miss the shops and the bakery.”

Sisters-in-law Lisa Portele, of Lorton, Va., and Linda Cardohely, of Quakertown, both former Valley residents, traveled on Saturday to meet their family one last time. They didn’t know when they made plans that it would be the last day to eat there.

“We have so many wonderful memories here,” Portele said. “Bridal showers, baby showers, birthday parties. I had my wedding cake made here.

Whenever the two women returned to the area, the family gathered at the Country Cupboard.

“I’m very sad,” Portele said. “I could cry. My heart is broken. This place is like part of the family.”

The family even had a nickname for Country Cupboard: CC.

“It was about spending time with family,” Cardohely said. “There are a lot of memories attached. I used to work at Evangelical (community hospital) and came here with colleagues too.

She and Protele also bought baked goods before dinner.

The Hessert family came from Williamsport for a last meal.

“It’s sad,” said Janet Hessert. “I used to come here with my mother and my grandmother. Four generations have come together to eat here.

Country Cupboard will be closed Sunday through Tuesday and the gift shops will be open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through February 26. A Facebook post from the company says most items in the gift shop will be 40% off the original price starting Wednesday. Food, bakery and deli items will not be included.

The message stated that the gift cards would not be redeemable for merchandise during the last week of activity for the gift shop registers. Customers can redeem remaining gift cards for cash at the Guest Services counter until 5 p.m. on February 26.

Chris Baylor, CEO of Baylor-Hamm Cos, said Friday that 25 employees had found other jobs and many were close to retirement. On the day Country Cupboard’s closure was announced, the restaurant employed 136 full-time and part-time staff. Last week, the restaurant had 127 employees.

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