Carolyn L. Braun (

A blast from the past …

Recently while taking a break from shopping in St. Cloud, we stopped at one of our favorite places for lunch – the Park Diner (which is actually in Waite Park, Mn.). Baby boomers instantly recognize the eclectic decor – an instant flash back to the 1950’s and 1960’s. The outside of the building gives you a clue of what waits inside – it replicates the old-time diner cars.

A 360 degree view of the inside of The Park Diner.

The restaurant serves breakfast, burgers, sandwiches, daily specials, shakes and malts – and are known for their signature sliders.

The inside of the Park Diner. The seats remind me of a 1958 Chevrolet interior. Also note the black and white tile, common in restaurants of the 1950′ and 1960’s.

The walls are thoroughly decorated with plaques containing gold records, car-related signs, articles about famous performers and coke and other product-related signs. Look close in the photo immediately below – on the far right with the gold record) and you will see Buddy Holly (born Charles Harding Holley) – of Buddy Holly and the Crickets. Holly’s band had 7 songs in the Top 40. Remember “That Will Be the Day?” Holly, along with Richie Valens and the Big Bopper, died in a plane crash on Feb. 3, 1959, after performing at the Clear Lake Ballroom in Iowa. Their deaths are memorialized as ‘the day the music died’ in Don McLean’s iconic song “American Pie.” (More information HERE)





Even though it is easy for baby-boomers to relate to this decor, the restaurant appears to be very popular to people of all ages. Maybe it’s because the kids’ meals are served in a cardboard classic car or maybe it’s the daily specials – affordable, home cooking. In any case, if you get a chance, stop by. It’s worth at least one visit … and perhaps, like us, many more.

Until next time, THANKS for reading!








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