The Original Rib House in Vandalia will shut down this weekend after 38 years.
The Original Rib House, which seats more than 200 combined in its main dining room and lounge, has about 20 employees, the Brusmans said. They were informed of the decision Monday.
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“There were some tears,” Renee Brusman said. “This restaurant staff is very much like a family.”
Business has slowed, in part due to an aging clientele, competition from restaurants in and around the nearby Miller Lane development, and the loss of big events such as the Amateur Trapshooting Association’s Grand American Trapshooting Championships, Bill Brusman said. The difficulty in hiring and retaining staff members also contributed to the decision to shut down, Renee and Bill Brusman said.
It was not an easy decision, he said.
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“I’ve grown up with this restaurant. I had to share my dad with this restaurant,” Renee Brusman said. “But we had a lot of family dinners here. All the customers knew each other. Over time, this became almost a community center that served food and alcohol.”
Renee Brusman and her father Bill Brusman, co-owners of The Original Rib House in Vandalia, which will shut down this weekend after 38 years.
The family didn’t consider trying to sell the business.
“You don’t want to see someone else take over your dream,” Renee Brusman said.
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The restaurant will be open from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. today, Tuesday and Wednesday, from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, from 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday, and from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, July 13, the restaurant’s final day.
“Come in and get some broasted chicken, look at old pictures, and enjoy the memories,” Renee said.