The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

July 2, 2014

Leon's Diner

Restaurant offers a tasty step into past

Leon’s Diner, one of the oldest restaurants in Danville, has sprung back to life once again.

“Best food in town. Are we ever glad it reopened,” said customer Joe Pounds.

Pounds is one of many regular customers at Leon’s. His friend J.D. Cooke has been frequenting the diner since the 1980s. For Pounds and his friends, the food is great, the prices are right and the restaurant is in a good location.

Customer Sharon Hofmann also shared enthusiasm for the restaurant. She and her friend are attracted to its pleasant atmosphere and fast service.

“It’s quiet. We can sit and talk. We can unwind for a little bit. It’s always clean and the people who work here are nice,” commented Sharon’s friend while savoring her bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich.

The customers are also happy with its new owners Mike and Christine Daugherty, who are on a mission to keep the diner open for all to enjoy.

“We opened it back up because we didn’t like to see it deteriorating. We want it to come back to life. This is the same diner our parents went to when they were our age,” said owner Mike Daugherty.

Walking into the restaurant is like taking a step into the past.

The white walls, coupled with the red booths and barstools, provide an authentic vintage feel.

The friendly atmosphere adds to the diner’s small-town character.

Its most popular entrées, cooked by Tina Garza, are biscuits and gravy and meat loaf. The original menu is still being used.

The diner, located on 210 North Logan Avenue at Madison Square, has been serving Vermilion county residents since the late 1950s.

The restaurant was originally a gas station run by Gordon Bridgman.

The gas station, called Standard Oil Station, closed when the Mill Street Bridge in Ellsworth Park was marked off limits in 1960.

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