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Suffolk County Diner Closes After Nearly 90 Years In Business

Sunny's Riverhead Diner & Grill
Sunny's Riverhead Diner & Grill Photo Credit: Google Maps street view

COVID-19 has claimed another victim, this one being a Long Island establishment.

Sunny’s Riverhead Diner & Grill, one of Long Island’s longest-standing eateries, is closing its doors after being a staple in Suffolk County since 1932.

Earlier this month, the owners announced that due to financial hardships caused by the pandemic, the popular diner would no longer be serving diners after nearly 90 years on Riverhead's main street.

According to reports, the owners, Jim and Sunny Liszanckiel struggled during the pandemic, despite offering temporary outdoor dining. The eatery later wrestled to keep up with sales without having a dinner menu, even after indoor dining returned to New York restaurants.

The Liszanckies bought the popular Riverhead Diner and Grill from longtime owner Liz Strebel in January 2017, whose father and uncle purchased the diner in 1961.

After four years owning the restaurant, the Liszanckiels were forced to shut things down after being unable to lock down enough cash and loans to keep the operation afloat.

“Generations of families have eaten in this very diner,” the restaurant’s website reads. “Now under new ownership with the same family and community values. We look forward to serving you with fresh local produce and some new things added to the menu while keeping the old favorites and preserving the history.

“Jim and Sunny Liszanckie worked hard to overhaul the longtime diner on Riverhead's East Main Street.” 

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