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Since it’s been a while since we took a trip down memory lane and re-visited some of our favorite businesses that have gone too soon- I figured I’d put another list together with some of the newer departures, and of course a couple throw-backs as well.
Can any of you imagine having FREE CHILD CARE while you grocery shop?? Seems crazy, right? If you lived in Beaver County, that’s just how sweet life was for Giant Eagle shoppers… only a decade or so ago.
Mom would drop us off to play Sonic the Hedgehog, watch cartoons and color while she had a stress free shopping spree. No toddlers hanging off the cart ramming into people, grabbing Goldfish off the shelf and knocking everything off in the process, crying because they didn’t get a cookie… those were much simpler, happier times.
One (technically two) of my favorite Italian spots in the County… gone too soon. R.I.P.
They cooked up some of the best restaurant pizza around and arguably the best chicken and broccoli alfredo I’ve ever had. I legitimately miss going to Pacentro’s for dinner or even grabbing some quick takeout.
Mary’s Bride & Formal:
If you grew up on the North side of the County, chances are you bought a dress, or at least tried on a few at Mary’s Bride and Formal. You got to know Mary and the other ladies by name, and it felt like visiting family every time you walked in the door!
It was the same experience for our boys at Zeiden’s (included in one of my previous articles.)
Janice’s Sweet Harmony Café:
This music-themed café was such a cool spot to go for breakfast or lunch when you were venturing down Duss Avenue in Ambridge. The names of the menu items were super clever, and their German apple pancakes were out-of-this-world!
As a self-proclaimed breakfast connoisseur, I’m always sad to lose one of these great, old-fashioned diners in the area.
Am I the only one who misses the old-school way of renting movies?
Sure, hitting a button on your tv for an on-demand flick, streaming from Netflix, or even grabbing a RedBox while you’re out may be more “convenient”… but I sure loved meandering up and down the aisles, checking out the backs of the VHS tapes and making my newly informed film decisions.
Wilson’s always used to have “rent 2 get 1 free” specials, and you got to keep them for at least a week. Remember when you’d go in for a new release and all 30 copies were already checked out? Ah, the good old days that kicked off my movie obsession!
This was always a go-to for couples who wanted to eat dinner and take pictures along the river before Homecoming. They also had arguably the best steak salads in our area.
The building itself was super cool and provided a great dining experience. Hopefully with the Shell plant up and running it could be revitalized?
Toys R Us:
When Toys R Us closed, I felt like my childhood had disappeared right along with Geoffrey the Giraffe. I spent HOURS walking those aisles and telling my mom every single thing I could ever want, and my son did the same with me. Christmas shopping for him was magical wandering through that giant toy store.
Now my only options are braving Wal Mart or Amazon Priming it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a Prime fanatic. But it just isn’t the same when it comes to toy shopping!
Pit N Pub:
Back in the ‘90’s, the best Mother’s Day Brunch in the upper BC wasn’t from a fancy golf course… it was from the Pit N Pub. Their Prime Rib was to-die-for, and we went every single year!
It was a place you would easily drive by if you didn’t know it was there, especially because the casual bar/lounge offered food much more delicious than you would expect from looking at it on the outside.
How many kids (now adults) spent their teenage years growing up on Route 18? Between Blazer’s, the old movie theater, and Sim’s… you really couldn’t beat it!
When I was in middle school, we went skating EVERY Friday night. And by skating I mean mostly playing games… but we all loved the couple skate, four corners and dodgeball. They even put a dance floor in the middle of the rink towards the end of their run. Teenage heaven!
This was definitely THE PLACE to eat in Chippewa back in the day. Live music, .25 cent hot dogs and .50 cent beers… we sure could use that now! In later years they dropped the “Courtside” and introduced a brunch buffet, prime rib, and other upscale items.
I have so many fond memories of this place even though the restaurant and building itself have been gone for almost 20 years.
What businesses do you miss the most? I’d love to take a few more strolls down memory lane!