Southern Belle's in Bedford Park closed last weekend. (Supplied photo)

Southern Belle's in Bedford Park closed last weekend. (Supplied photo)

Bedford Park buys Southern Belle restaurant

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By Bob Bong

Southern Belle’s restaurant in Bedford Park closed for the last time last Sunday after more than two decades at 6737 S. Archer Ave.

The village has a contract to purchase the site for $2.5 million. Closing is expected in the first quarter.

Bedford Park Mayor Dave Brady said a plan to move the restaurant to 65th Street and Central Avenue didn’t work out because of the cost.

Southern Belle’s still has locations in Yorkville, Barrington, Plainfield, and Carpentersville.

Brady said the Bedford Park building needs work.

Brady said village officials have discussed four possible options for the property. One would be building a courtroom and police training facility. Another would be turning it into an outdoor recreation facility such as a synthetic skating rink. A third option would be to beautify the property. Brady said the village could also turn around and sell the lot.

He also said the village board would consider other options, if they are proposed.

Brady said the village board was committed to upgrading the property and improving the southwest entrance to the village.

In a related move, Bedford Park late last year annexed a parcel of land near the restaurant that had been within Bridgeview boundaries until it was de-annexed.

Brady said the parcel was missed by both Bedford Park and Bridgeview when they did a land swap involving the former 3M property.

biz peteys II signPetey’s II closes in Orland Park

Petey and Mary Kattos branched out from Petey’s Bungalow in Oak Lawn in 1969 when they opened Petey’s II at 159th and LaGrange Road in Orland Park.

When they opened their second location, that part of Orland Park was mostly farmland.

The old school restaurant closed temporarily on January 16 and owners announced last week the restaurant was closed for good amid reports it had been sold to a company associated with Pete’s Fresh Market.

The closing announcement was posted on Petey’s II Facebook page with no mention of the sale.

An email to Petey’s Bungalow seeking comment was not returned, but there was a lengthy message on Petey’s II Facebook page:

“To our valued patrons and friends, farewell. It is with a mix of gratitude and nostalgia we announce the closing of Petey’s II Restaurant, a cherished landmark in the Orland Park community. To those who have been loyal and supportive, our family sincerely thanks you for being a part of our journey, our story, our history, our fond memories.

“Founded in 1969 by Petey and Mary Kattos, Petey’s II has been more than just a restaurant; it has been a gathering place for families and friends, a site for celebrations, and a testament to the enduring spirit of Orland Park’s culinary scene. Our family’s journey began with a simple vision to offer a unique dining experience combining classic flavors with a warm, inviting atmosphere. Through the years, we have had the privilege of witnessing generations of families come together at our tables to celebrate special occasions, milestones, holidays, nights out and family dining traditions.

“As one of the few businesses around dating back to the late 1960s, the heartfelt decision to depart Orland Park was not taken lightly. For years, we felt at home in our community, but things changed. The decision to close our doors comes in the wake of significant changes within the restaurant industry and a step closer to Petey’s well-deserved retirement.

“We witnessed the growth of our community and surrounding areas, and successfully navigated through changing times, challenges, a pandemic, all while staying true to our core values. We reached many milestones and survived countless adversities along the way. For our restaurant to thrive and survive for 55 years is one of our family’s proudest accomplishments. We have proven a local, family-owned independent restaurant and small business can flourish and withstand the test of time. We have achieved a place in Orland Park’s history.

“For Petey’s II Restaurant & Lounge, this is an end of an era. It has been an honor being a pioneer in Orland Park and Chicago Southland’s hidden gem. As we bid adieu to Orland Park, we invite you to relive and cherish the memories which made Petey’s II a beloved establishment for over five decades.

“Our original location Petey’s Bungalow in Oak Lawn is open for business and will honor Petey’s II gift certificates.

“Cheers to the Petey’s II journey!”

Petey and Mary opened the Bungalow in 1961 at Kostner and 95th Street as a steakhouse with a supper club feel.

Chicagoland Hams shuts down walk-in sales

After 35 years of selling hams and roasts at 11845 Southwest Highway in Palos Heights, Chicagoland Hams (formerly Honey Baked Ham), has stopped taking walk-in customers and, as of February 1, will take online or phone orders.

Owner Kathleen Golding said, “Changes in the retail world continue thus, we at Chicagoland Hams, are making the change to ensure that we can continue to offer our hams and roast products locally.

“Hams, roasts, steaks, meatloaf, and slim-Jims will still be available by ordering online or using the same phone number we have had for over 35 years, 708-448-8507.  We will continue to offer UPS and local delivery as well as curbside pickup during the week.

“I would like to thank our valued customers for being so committed to our products for all these years.”

biz wrights furnitureFinal days for Wright’s Furniture

Wright’s Furniture Warehouse at 2936 Wireton Road in Blue Island is in the final days of its closing sale.

The store, which has been selling furniture in the south suburbs since 1980, is closing because its owners are retiring after more than 40 years.

The warehouse must close by March 6. The store is open Thursday to Sundays until

For more information, visit their website at wrightsfurniturewarehouse.com.

If you see a new business in town or wonder what happened to an old favorite, drop me a line at bobbong@hotmail.com.  

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