Restaurant set to open in Shamokin looks to the city's past to inspire its future
Kathy Vetovich knows Rome wasn't built in a day.
It's going to take much longer than that before Shamokin returns to its former glory, but the owners of Heritage Restaurant say they're in for the long haul.
"We really want to be that pebble in a pond. I really want to be part of a transition or reformation of Shamokin," Kathy Vetovich said.
Vetovich is the Co-Owner of Heritage Restaurant, located in the heart of Downtown Shamokin.
Sam and Kathy Vetovich, aling with Brittany and Bill Chesney plan on opening it on October 10th.
When the Vetovich's bought the property back in 2016, it was rundown. Now it looks brand new on the inside and out.
"My husband thinks I'm crazy but I saw the potential," Vetovich said.
The restaurant centers around Shamokin's history.
Many items inside like the hostess stand, light fixtures, and the bar were taken from old landmarks or businesses that closed years ago.
The group hopes their business will help in the process of revitalizing a once booming coal town.
"I know it's not gonna go back to what it was in the 60's as I was growing up, but I really want to, again, step up where we are as a community," Vetovich said.
They chose a vintage "We Like Living in Shamokin" license plate at the centerpiece for the downstairs bar. The plates were popular in town back in the 1970's.
"Everyone thought once the coal industry left Shamokin that everyone was fleeing and that it's was going to be a dying breed, but no, we still like being here," Bill Chesney said.
Northumberland County Director of Economic Planning, Don Alexander, spoke to FOX56 about the new venture: "I'm just really excited that they invested and believed in Shamokin. Their investments are serving as a catalyst for rebirth and resurgence of commercial activity there."
While there is still some work left t o do, the owners are confident they'll be up and running soon.