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SALT LAKE CITY — You can call this a comeback.
Marie Callender’s is once again open at 1109 E. 3900 South in Millcreek just a few months after it and another location in Layton closed when its parent company filed for bankruptcy.
The restaurant celebrated its grand reopening Thursday, said Thunder Alexander, a manager at the Marie Callender’s Salt Lake location. The chain announced the location had reopened in a Facebook post on Friday, noting it was “back by popular demand.”
The reopening came two weeks before Thanksgiving and a little more than a month before Christmas, a period in which the restaurant is known for serving meals during the holidays.
“It means a lot for us to be able to be open again,” Alexander said. “We’re back for good. We’re not going anywhere.”
The two Utah locations closed in early August after their parent company, Perkins & Marie Callender’s LLC, filed for bankruptcy. In all, 19 Marie Callender’s restaurant locations nationwide were shuttered, as well as 10 Perkins restaurants. More than 1,000 jobs were reportedly affected by the closings.
Alexander was among those out of a job when the restaurant closed. However, with support from customers, the decision was made to reopen the location in Millcreek. Alexander said it nearly reopened in October but some setbacks delayed it to mid-November.
“We’ve been here forever, and when we closed down a lot of our guests were pretty devastated. They looked forward to our holiday feasts; they looked forward to our pies,” she said. “Now that we’re back, a lot of our guests are very pleased and excited that they’re able to come back and enjoy our feasts and our holiday pies and stuff.”
There will be some changes customers can expect. For example, the restaurant's new hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day, and it is no longer serving breakfast — although that might return next year, Alexander noted. It also has a new number for orders: 385-474-7972. People can also order via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
However, Marie Callender’s notable holiday features won’t change. The restaurant will still remain open on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day for people looking for meals or holiday pies, like it had in years past.
The fact the restaurant reopened just before the holidays may feel symbolic for that reason, but it may be just as important for those who retained their jobs through the response from the community.
Alexander said she feels “blessed” to be able to return to a job she loves and that many others who also were laid off in August were able to come back as well.
“When this place closed down, it was like I lost a piece of me,” she said. “I have my personal family, but then I have my Marie Callender’s family … I felt like I lost half of my family. When we opened back up and I was able to come back, it meant a lot to me. It meant a lot to my family.”