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Ed Debevic's Closes River North Diner, To Reopen At New Site In Spring

CHICAGO (CBS) -- After 31 years in River North, the iconic Ed Debevic's diner has closed its doors, and customers will have to wait until spring before it reopens in a new location.

The 1950s-style diner has been a staple for Chicago tourists, who get a kick out of the servers' snarky comments as they serve up burgers, fries, and milkshakes.

"What do they say? You're not working, so stop crying," said one Ed Debevic's staffer.

On the diner's last day in River North, Cheryl came from Plainfield for her first taste of Ed's food and signature insulting service.

"When you say Ed Debevic's, everybody knows; whether you've been here, or not, they know about it," she said.

The Russo family, of Elmwood Park, came to Ed Debevic's on Sunday to celebrate a grandson's first french fry and all the memories over the years.

"It's like coming home to a big family dinner, because this is how our family acts. They yell at us, we yell at each other, and it's just normal for us."


Also making a final trip to the diner at Ontario and Wells streets was Katie Murphy, who worked at Ed Debevic's 18 years ago.

"It was an awesome part of my life, and I'm still in touch with a lot of the people that I used to work with, and they had a big reunion on Friday, and I wasn't able to make it, so I wanted to come in just to say goodbye to the building," she said.

"Cherry" has worked at Ed's for 11 years, and said she's enjoyed seeing all of the memories created there.

"All over Facebook, and Instagram, there's pictures of this place from 20 years ago, 25 years ago, and it looks almost exactly the same," she said.

Fellow server "Popcorn" said the space is important, but not as much as the staff.

"I love my coworkers. They are what help us get through the day. We all help each other out, and are really supportive," he said.

Popcorn said he's not sure if he'll work at the new location, slated to open in the spring. Management hasn't said where the new location will be, other than east of the old one.

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