Unfriendly news for this native Clevelandian: the smiley cone sundae could be no more??
Okay, Westlake + Parma Heights are safe, for now….but still.
Friendly Ice Cream Corp., the troubled family restaurant chain that was a casualty of a tough economy and changing customer preferences, said it closed 63 of its nearly 500 locations as it looks to reorganize under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. … Friendly’s was founded by Prestley and Curtis Blake, brothers who started a neighborhood ice cream shop in Springfield during the Great Depression in 1935. Over the next several decades, the men opened hundreds of restaurants, carving a niche in the market as a family-friendly hangout serving ice cream treats before they began feuding over the direction the business would take. They sold it to Hershey in 1979.
During the 1950s, before anyone fretted about childhood obesity and before the mall had completely displaced Main Street as the business district of suburban communities, Friendly’s seemed the ideal place for New England families to share meals built around hamburgers and ice cream sundaes.