WHITESBURG, Ky (WYMT) - Staff at the Courthouse Cafe in Whitesburg served their last dinner crowd on Friday. After nearly 30 years in business, the restaurant will closed its doors for a final time.
It is a building that began as a bank, touted a tavern and even housed a hair cutting shop. But for the last few decades, the space has been the home of the community favorite Courthouse Cafe. That is according to co-owner of the business, Josephine Richardson.
"I opened the bookstore and craft shop in 1973 and the restaurant in 1985. So I have been on this corner for almost 45 years," said Richardson.
She tells WYMT she is proud that her restaurant is what many people call a staple in the community.
"I think it is the connection to people that has been most wonderful," said Richardson.
For regular Katrina Whisenant, eating at Courthouse Cafe feels like home.
"This is like a family gathering that we all meet and eat. We have children and we run around," said Whisenant.
As the last lunch crowd enjoyed a meal among friends, Richardson greeted them. Even during her interview with WYMT, she could not stop waving goodbye as cherished patrons left.
"Bye, we will still be on the corner just not in the restaurant," said Richardson.
Whisenant added that knowing the restaurant is closing is tough to come to grips with.
"We love the courthouse cafe and we are sad to see it go," said Whisenant.
But Richardson, who said the bad economy did impact their decision to close, is ready.
"I think everything has a season and maybe this is our time to close it. We will close out on that high note. It will be fine," said Richardson.
Even though the Courthouse Cafe is closing, the Cozy Corner, which is a craft and book store next door, will stay open.