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Eating at Ernie’s, and memories of The Flamingo

Had a letter not too long ago from Yvonne Leiphart of West Manchester Township. Yvonne was kind enough to write in regarding several topics, including restaurants of the past in York County.

She says, “I wonder if you have in your directory one of my favorite restaurants of all time, ‘The Flamingo’ on Belmont St.” Well, I didn’t, but I do now! Thanks, Yvonne!

She also adds, “I have only one more thing concerning Don Strausbaugh’s inquiry about Ernie’s. I don’t remember an Ernie’s restaruant. But ‘Ernie’ McCall had the North Pole Drive in (corner of Whiteford Road and Sherman St.) where you could get sundaes.” We’d talked about that one in a post last month.

But Yvonne has another Ernie to mention. She continues, “Also ‘Ernie’ Rhodes had the Trail Coffee Shop on South George Street where I know you could get ice cream sundaes because I made my share of them as a waitress in the ’50s.”
Wow, that’s another addition to my list. Thanks, Yvonne! Anyone else remember The Flamingo or the Trail Coffee Shop?

2 comments on “Eating at Ernie’s, and memories of The Flamingo

  1. Hi Joan,
    I used to work at the Flamingo Restaurant starting in 1970 and continuing through 1974. I was a pot scubber, then dishwasher, moved to the pantry, then became a salad maker and eventually assisted with the chef, Santo Rodriguez, with cooking vegatables. The owner of the Flamingo was Ray Bahn and his wife Mary. The Flamingo served high quality food and was considered one of the top 3 restaurants in York County for many years. I would to see a picture of their menu to try and remember some of the entree’s. If you know of any place that may have something like that please let me know. Thank you!!

    Rob Tracy

  2. We lived on Country Cub Road, and my best friend lived on Colonial Avenue. I biked all over the Grantley neighborhood back in the days when an adolescent could be by herself for hours. I was casual labor (paid under the counter because I was legally not old enough to work) in the mid 60s at a neighborhood grocery store down from Grantley Park. I’d take phone orders from people in Wyndam Hills, and collect their groceries and box them for delivery. I remember when they began building York Junior College.
    I worked as a cashier at Bear’s Cafeteria during my high school summers in the late 60s. Best mac n’ cheese!
    I loved all the shops in the brownstones downtown. I worked several summers and holidays at an expensive gift shop on East Market Street, Marion McCullough’s, I think. It was there I fell in love with Baccarat crystal and Georg Jensen silver, which I still can’t afford to this day. The shop was on many of the socialites wedding gift registries of the day. Ritzy!
    I shopped at Alice Hoffer’s and Setler’s hats. We also patronized Butera’s shoe repair shop since I required a lift in my left shoes. Mr. Butera worked hard and long hours, but was always ready with a smile for his customers. A son became a doctor, I believe. There was an art/frame shop in the basement of one of those brownstones, too. I also recall a jewelry/gift store in another basement, which specialized in India brass in the 70s.
    Speaking of basements, there were numerous basement shops in the back of the Colonial Shopping Center: a book store my mother loved, and a coffee house with poetry readings in the 70s.
    I was active in York Little Theatre (now The Belmont Theater) in the early 70s, and we practically lived at the Flamingo after rehearsals. I’m glad to see the theater is still active.
    As a young single in the 70s, I frequented local hot spots such as the Woozy Moose with their now vintage wicker chairs in the dining area, the First Capital Dispensing Company (FCDC), played many a game of backgammon there, Murf’s Study Hall, The Library (Lancaster?), so many others whose names escape me.

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