Hundreds flocked to Kane’s Diner in Flushing after news broke that it would be closing its doors on May 1.
Ernie Kane founded the diner at 44-15 College Point Blvd. in 1968 and passed it on to his children George, Patricia and Toni, who have owned it for the past 15 years.
The owners posted the announcement on their Facebook page on April 25 thanking patrons for making Kanes “a favorite place to celebrate your daily moments and special days.”
Multiple reports confirmed that the Kane family sold the property for $15 million to Long Island-based developer Kenny Liu. Liu has developed residential properties in Flushing and Rego Park.
South Ozone Park resident Manny Lacayo and his family had their last meal at the diner on April 28. The patron recalls that he had been coming to Kane’s for over 10 years.
“It was crowded but nice. The workers were very emotional and they got to hug everyone,” Lacayo said. “The workers made you feel like you were at home.”
Lacayo said that his niece suggested the final meal at Kane’s, where he enjoyed his favorite diner meal of steak and eggs. He recalled that he used to frequent the diner when his mom was alive and it was the place where he and his family shared a meal after she passed.
He added that he often ate at Kane’s even after he moved from Elmhurst to South Ozone Park.
“I went [to Kanes] instead of going to places near me,” said Lacayo.
Lane Clark said that going to Kanes Diner was like a “rite of passage” for people. The Queens native said that he always enjoyed the clean and friendly atmosphere and “nice choice of menu items.”
“They never had a standard menu, they always used celebrity names or a double entendre,” said Clark, who has eaten at the diner for 15 years. “It gave them more flavor, flair and personality than other places.”
He added that it was a shame to see mom and pop establishments like Kanes go by the wayside in favor of bigger franchises.
George, who currently lives in Nassau County, was the head manager of the diner for the past 15 years. His sisters and co-owners Toni and Patricia traveled once a month from their homes in Florida to help run the establishment.
Kane’s will be open until 8 p.m. on May 1 and there will be a liquidation auction later this month.
Flushing Post first reported the news about the diner’s last day.