St. Marys Co-Owners Reopen ‘The Summit Lodge & Grill’ at Ridgway | News

RIDGWAY – Two St. Marys couples took on a local heritage when they reopened The Summit Lodge and Grill on Boot Jack Road on December 11.

The business, formerly called “The Summit Fireside Lodge and Grill,” closed in March, shortly after co-owner Tom “TO” Fitch, director of the Elk County Wilds Tourism Association, died in January. .

Mary Samick and her sister, Dawn Guido, along with their husbands, Brian Guido and Gregg Samick, have teamed up to take over the local restaurant and motel, beginning the trip in May and officially purchasing it Nov. 15, Mary Samick says .

The four co-owners are usually at the restaurant at different times and are still figuring out their roles, she said. But, collectively, they offer experience in management/business, maintenance and restoration. There are definitely benefits to having four owners with different backgrounds, Samick noted, as they can rotate and distribute the workload and hours between them.

Honored to carry on its community legacy, but excited to put their own spin on things, the new owners have made a few changes to Summit, including scaling back the menu, but keeping local favorites like chicken wings. They have also closed the back part of the restaurant and plan to use it later for local events, benefits, weddings etc.

There will definitely be more renovations and changes in The Summit’s future, Samick said, but for now they just wanted to be open and serve the community.

“I think TO would be happy,” Samick said, noting he’s given the new owners a really good base to build on.

Outdoor seating will also continue to be offered, she noted, and they also hope to add a patio out back.

Other family members also played their part in the business, such as Samick’s daughter, who painted the new mural inside the dining room.

Coming from St. Marys in the Ridgway community, Samick says everyone so far has been extremely helpful and welcoming, and they hope that continues. Since its opening on Saturday, the company has not stopped working.

It’s also important for them to offer fresh food and ingredients, Samick said, as well as supporting locals, such as freshly ground burgers from a Kersey butcher and hoagie buns from Joey’s Bakery, as well as freshly shaved sirloin.

It was a bit nerve-wracking to enter the restaurant business at that time, given the supply chain issues and staff shortage issues. They plan to “smell” the supply chain before providing a full take-out menu to customers, Samick said, and so far there have been no major staffing issues. However, there are still a few slots available for employees.

Something very special to note is that three of Summit Fireside Lodge and Grill’s former cooks have returned to work at the restaurant they once again call home.

“They stuck together through it all,” Samick said. “It’s good that they can come back and have that familiarity.”

The motel is already seeing its fair share of former residents returning, Samick said. It was also important to retain this aspect of the business, as Ridgway is a tourist community and plays a role in bringing visitors to town.

The new owners also plan to continue the Summit tradition of giving back to the community, contributing to local benefits and events, and more, she noted.

After announcing the reopening on the new Facebook page, ‘The Summit Lodge & Grill’, Samick said she was completely blown away by the increase in support, with the post generating over 600 shares very quickly. In preparation for the reopening, many people have volunteered to help, from cleaning motel rooms to repairs and construction and other tasks.

Brian Guido recalls working in the kitchen of his great-aunt’s restaurant as a young child and said he wanted to try something different and get into the world of hospitality . A big draw, he said, is being able to serve and give back to the community.

In January 2022, The Summit will begin offering karaoke on Fridays, Samick said, and live music on Sundays.

Overall, Ridgway and the surrounding communities seem very happy to see The Summit reopen, Samick said, and it’s been an exciting experience for everyone involved.

Visit the new “The Summit Lodge & Grill” page on Facebook. Call 814-776-2311 for more information.

About Michael B. Billingsley

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