ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) – Alaskans who have lived in Anchorage long enough have undoubtedly driven down Fifth Avenue near Merrill Field and seen Peggy’s Restaurant. The longtime eatery famous for its pies has been serving Anchorage since 1944.
A lot has changed since then, but the biggest change is coming Sunday, when the iconic pink and purple restaurant will close its doors for good.
The woman who owns Peggy’s is no longer named Peggy — her name is Nancy Burley, a familiar face at the restaurant who purchased it in 1988. For 35 years, Burley has come to work nearly every single day.
“She loves this business, and she loves her customers and she’ll do whatever she can to make them happy,” said Crystal Vincente, one of Burley’s two daughters who grew up in the restaurant.
Vincente said her mother never stops, but her children worried that she was slowing down.
“She complains that her hands are hurting her, her knees are hurting, and it’s just getting harder for her,” Vincente said.
As a result, Vincente and her sister made a tough call. They asked their mother to retire, and she reluctantly agreed.
“Those kids make me,” Burley laughed. “I’m not ready though — 35 years, I think that’s enough.”
Burley may not miss the long days, but she’ll certainly miss her customers — many of whom she’s known for ages.
“I’m thankful for all the people who supported me all these years,” Burley said.
On Thursday, just days before Sunday’s closure, Burley was busy in the kitchen and the dining room, serving meals and getting hugs. Some customers said it felt like they were losing a part of their family at the thought of Peggy’s going away.
Vincente said they’ve sold the property but not the business. She doesn’t know what will happen at the site. She said in the future it’s possible Peggy’s may reappear as a food truck from which Burley can sell her pies.
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