Events


REMEMBERING RIVERHEAD: CELEBRTING THE 80TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE RIVERHEAD DINER & GRILL WITH AN AFTERNOON OF STORY TELLING

10/23/12

REMEMBERING RIVERHEAD:  CELEBRTING THE 80TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE RIVERHEAD DINER & GRILL WITH AN AFTERNOON OF STORY TELLING
 
 
Tuesday, October 23 from 4 to 6 PM, to celebrate the 80th anniversary of the Riverhead Diner & Grill, the Landmarks Preservation Commission will host "Remembering Riverhead" -- an afternoon of story sharing  and reminiscing about Riverhead and its history. We invite anyone with stories to tell, and those who would just like to come and listen.   The event, at the historic diner, is free and open to the public. Coffee, tea and light refreshments will be served.  There will also be a photo display for the event.  
 
The Riverhead Diner & Grill is a classic 1930s stainless steel diner.  It has been a downtown landmark since 1932, and is now a centerpiece of the newly created Main Street National Register Historic District.  The first unit arrived in 1932, replacing an older building.  It was a prefabricated wood unit originally located on the lot just to the west. About five years later the original unit was moved to the rear and converted to a kitchen to make room for a new stainless steel unit from the Paramount Company of Haledon, New Jersey.  Then, in the early 1950s, both units of the diner were moved about 20 feet eastward to its present location in order to make way for a new commercial building on its old lot.
 
The Riverhead Diner & Grill is typical of the streamlined stainless steel “modern” design developed in the 1930s, the glory days of the American diner when numerous manufacturers competed with each other to produce the most modern and futuristic structures.   Although altered over the years, the original stainless steel walls and large windows are still visible on the east side of the structure facing the alley.  The advertisement announcing its grand opening in 1932 promised "Good food, well served, at attractive prices" -- a tradition that the current owner, Liz Strebel, still follows. It is one of the few places where long-time Riverheaders can usually count on "running into" other long-time Riverheaders for a friendly chat.  The Riverhead Diner & Grill is featured in a beautifully illustrated book, The American Diner, by Michael Karl Witzel, published in 1999.
 
We are inviting old timers, new timers and in-between timers to tell stories about Riverhead -- and all those who would like to just come to listen and learn.   We all have stories and we all love hearing each other's stories.  Some of us will be able to say "I remember when . . . "  while others of us will be there "to hear about when . . . ."  Whichever category you are in, come to REMEMBERING RIVERHEAD.
 
This will be a fun community event you won't want to miss.  And, remember, good stories need both story-tellers and story-listeners.

 

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