PAWTUCKET – A landmark diner in Pawtucket that first opened in 1959 is making way for a bank, to the dismay of the restaurant owners.
Kip’s Restaurant, located at 826 Newport Ave., is slated to close by Jan. 19 and the site must be vacated by the end of the month, according to the family that operated the business for the past 25 years. This comes after the restaurant property was sold for $800,000 by Kips Corner LLC to Newport Avenue Realty LLC on Nov. 15, according to public records documenting the real estate transaction.
Kip’s Restaurant was known for its hot wieners, cabinets (a slang word for frappes) and coffee milk, a Rhode Island specialty, using coffee syrup that’s made from scratch.
Sharro Perron Laurent, the daughter of the Kip’s Corner operators, Heather and Hank Macomber, organized an online fundraiser for her parents after they found out they were losing the business. The fundraiser has collected $5,735 for them as of Jan. 11.
The family said the new owners are planning to raze the restaurant and build a Chase Bank at the property. The Macombers did not have a lease in place in recent years, while continuing to rent from their former landlord.
“My parents put their entire life savings into this restaurant, along with their heart and souls,” Laurent wrote in a statement accompanying the GoFundMe fundraiser, which set a goal of collecting $25,000 to support the Macombers. “I’m not sure they’re going to be able to keep their home.”
The Macombers bought the restaurant business from the original owners, Lefty Baziotis and Chris Kazanis.
The company that sold the building in November also owns the neighboring Arigna Irish Pub and Restaurant. Kips Corner LLC bought the Kip’s Restaurant property from Baziotis and Kazanis about seven years ago for $712,000, according to public records.
Marc Larocque is a PBN staff writer. Contact him at Larocque@PBN.com. You may also follow him on Twitter @LaRockPBN.
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