It's the end of an era. After 45 years, White Fence Farm in Lakewood is calling it quits.
According to Westword, White Fence Farm -- which opened in 1973 -- will close on December 30. The sprawling restaurant is known around the region (there's even a billboard for it on I-70 somewhere in Kansas) for serving up family-style chicken dinners, along with its live music entertainment, a petting zoo, and a quaint country store.
Often the destination for holiday dinners and birthday celebrations, White Fence Farm has been a staple in Denver for 45 years -- a charming country farm in the middle of the city.
So why close?
Unfortunately, it seems that the Farm is yet another victim of the tight labor market in the food service industry.
“We require 100-plus employees on weekends, and it was becoming nearly impossible to staff the restaurant with qualified staff," owner Craig Caldwell told Westword. "We wish we could have kept this tradition open longer, but it was apparent that the changing demographics of our market were having an impact on revenue year over year.”
Caldwell also said that the restaurant has "been operating at a net monthly loss for a considerable amount of time."
Though he and co-owner Tom Piercy tried to expand the restaurant's reach and compete with modern restaurant concepts by offering food delivery services and a host of satellite take-out locations around the city, unfortunately, it was not enough. The satellite locations closed earlier this year.
And so it seems that we have just a little over two months to head over to the White Fence Farm for one last hurrah and trip down memory lane. Will you be making a reservation for one final White Fence Farm chicken dinner? What do you think about the closure? Reminisce with us, and leave your condolences, memories, photos, et al., in the comments below.