An iconic Johnstown restaurant reopened Monday morning. Crowds of people lined up to get a taste of Coney Island’s famous hot dogs and sundowners, once again.
“I love the hot dogs. Hot dogs with everything on them,” said Marie Klein, a Johnstown native.
“I’m just so happy it’s open again,” said Amy Levely, who came to Coney Island to eat lunch with her mother.
The restaurant closed unexpectedly last summer, before Randy Clark, the owner of Miller’s Clothing, announced he would take over the restaurant.
“When you start losing the stalwarts and businesses in your community, it’s difficult. People have their favorite memories,” Clark said. “Those memories are important to carry on. That tradition is important to carry on.”
New owners, but the same old taste that brings back memories for 77-year-old Joseph Porchia, Sr.
“We would go dancing, then after the clubs closed, we’d end up over here around 2 o’clock in the morning filling up on hot dogs and chocolate milk, believe it or not,” Porchia said.
The grand reopening attracted another local icon: Steve Carlson, the former Johnstown Jets hockey player who also starred as a Hanson Brother in the cult classic film Slap Shot.
“It’s a great tradition and it’s great to be part of it,” Carlson said.
Kitchen Manager Anthony Armstrong said being back behind the grill, never tasted to sweet.
“I knew that we would be able to bring it back,” Armstrong said.
Clark said he’s glad to cook up this Johnstown tradition, once again.
“It’s like bringing back an old friend,” Clark said. “It’s just a wonderful day for downtown Johnstown.”
Klein hopes they’re bringing back a piece of Johnstown’s history for many more years to come.
“Coney Island: keep it up. I want to see you here for another 50 years,” Klein said. “Maybe another hundred. I hope so.”