By Megan Alley
The owners of the Village Diner and Bake Shop in Batavia have closed the eatery.
The last day of business for the diner was June 28.
Former nurses Michelle Copher and Gianna Dirr originally opened the diner, located at 236 E. Main St., on Feb. 24, 2016.
When asked what led to their decision to close the diner, the two cited repeated building issues that had gone unresolved by the landlord, which led to Copher and Dirr spending their own money to do building maintenance and repairs.
“We’ve put everything we have into just keeping this place within the health code regulations and everything else because we care about our customers, and we don’t want some animal falling through the ceiling into somebody’s lap,” Dirr said. “Our customers were wonderful. We appreciate each and every one of them that came in here. It’s just that we can’t, in good conscience, continue to serve people in this atmosphere.”
She added, “We cannot keep up with it, and we will not compromise our food or the safety of our customers for anybody.”
Customers of the diner may have noticed a recent rash of closings at the diner, which Dirr said were due to ongoing building issues.
“It wasn’t because we just didn’t want to get out of bed, or we just didn’t feel like working, it was because we’d get here and there was yet something else wrong inside this building,” she said, adding, “We just went as far as we can here.”
The two have received an outpouring of support since they announced the closing on Facebook on July 5.
“We tried, we did try, and the bottom line is we appreciate everybody who came in here,” Dirr said. “We enjoyed meeting everybody and spending time with them.”
She added, “A lot of the Facebook comments make us feel good because they’re conveying the same thing back to us – they enjoyed coming in, they felt like family, the food was great.”
Looking ahead, the two aren’t sure what’s next.
“We really don’t have a plan right now,” Dirr said. “Unfortunately, our savings has been depleted from just trying to keep this place intact.”
She added, “At this point, I don’t know what our plan is. We’ve looked at some buildings in Batavia, but … none of them are viable options at this point.”
Copher and Dirr are open to the idea of offering catering services, but they haven’t yet developed a firm plan for that endeavor.
In the meantime, customers who are interested in purchasing Dirr’s baked goods may do so by reaching out to her on Facebook at MiMi’s Sweet Shop.