Last month Riverdale City Grill, commonly referred to as “River City,” closed its doors after owners decided to sell the business.
“We would like to thank our customers for all the years of patronage. We have sold the restaurant and today will be our last day open for business. Stop by and have a drink and say farewell to RCG!! The friendships and relationships we’ve made here will forever stay with us! Thanks again for the years of business!” a Facebook post from Riverdale City Grill on Feb. 19 read.
Since its opening twelve years ago, the bar and restaurant was a local hotspot for Riverdale residents and Manhattan College students. It’s pub-style menu featuring burgers, wings and custom salads were popular amongst its patrons as well as its happy hour specials.
“Riverdale City Grill was definitely a pillar of the Riverdale neighborhood,” Tori Fitzpatrick said. “It was a place everyone knew, and everyone knew was good.”
Senior Sara Buckey agrees with Fitzpatrick’s sentiments.
“Things just won’t be the same without River City,” Buckley said. “It still hasn’t sunk in that it is closed for good. Some of my best college memories are of nights spent at River City.”
Fitzpatrick, a junior at MC, was a waitress at the restaurant since September 2016. She believes that the grill was so beloved by students because of its proximity and prices.
“I personally think the reason that MC students were so drawn to River City specifically was because it was close to campus, had a good range of options, was reasonably priced and was just a little bit nicer than Fenwicks,” Fitzpatrick said.
Fitzpatrick also commented on the undeniable familial atmosphere that the business created.
“I’ve been a waitress at a couple different places, and [River City] was by far my favorite job because it felt like more than just a job. If I had a bad day or week at school I would look forward to going to work because it felt like a family, like a place I belonged. We all celebrated each other’s successes and helped through the rough bits,” she said.
Riverdale City Grill is not the only local business to close its doors in recent years. The community has seen P&K’s Grille, commonly referred to as “Pipers,” and Cannons shut down. Short Stop Coffeeshop also announced that it would permanently close on March 19 after 30 years of business.
“So many places I would go to or hangout at have closed in the past four years. It is strange that future MC students won’t experience Short Stop diner after a night out or watch games at River City,” Buckley said. “But for everything that closes something else will open.”