While some people stayed home on Sunday to dig out of their driveways, others got in the car to travel to the Redwood Diner in East Syracuse. Regulars weren’t going to let snowy conditions stop them from getting their favorite meal.
“Some people need to come out, get some food, not that they couldn’t go anywhere else, but they choose to come here and I want to be there for them,” said Jim Fekos, Owner of the Redwood Diner.
Jim Fekos has been running the place for 15 years. You can find him there any day of the week, but even he was surprised to see how many people showed up during the snow storm.
Some people came from just around the corner, while others came all the way from Boonville, like Ed Longamore. “I had about two feet this morning. Plowed and shoveled and made my way here,” he said.
“Food is excellent,” said Pete Charima, a diner regular. “You know, there’s other diners up the street, but they can’t compete with him.”
Regulars like Charima risked the drive over not just for the food, but for the atmosphere. To them, a sloppy drive is worth it, and it doesn’t hurt to have four wheel drive.
“I haven’t plowed my driveway in 30 years,” said Charima. “I just go back and forth with the truck.”
Most of the faces are close friends of the owner.
“I would say 95% of them, I kind of know them,” said Fekos.
The main reason Fekos opened up on Sunday morning was to give back to those who give him so much.
“They’re friends, they’re loyal customers, not just customers,” Fekos said. “You know, they call, ‘are you open,’ if we ever need anything every one of these guys would step up to the plate.”
Fekos’ customers were happy to walk away after enjoying a full plate, with full stomachs.