GRIFFITH | A longtime staple on Broad Street in downtown Griffith is closing.
Boz Hot Dogs, which has been at the top of The Times Best of the Region list for years, will close down after 27 years of serving region residents Chicago dogs, Italian beef and Polish sausage.
"This Boz location will be closing its doors at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 21," read a sign posted on the door. "It is time to retire. Thank you for 27 great years."
Owner Nancy Kennedy could not be reached for comment. She also owns the Dyer franchise, which will remain open, said Boz Hot Dogs president Roberta Hart.
The 44-year-old hot dog restaurant chain still has 10 locations, mostly in Chicago's south suburbs. The once highly popular hot dog joint – instantly recognizable because of its colorful, candy-striped signs – is becoming less prevalent in Northwest Indiana. The Hammond location closed three years ago.
Hart said there was a chance the restaurant could reopen as a Boz because she was talking to interested parties about taking over the Griffith franchise.
"We might know more in a few weeks," she said.
Boz Hot Dogs is just the latest in a string of Griffith restaurants to close. Rick's Grill and Chela's Cocina also shut their doors this year.
The 1,018-square-foot building Boz occupied at 303 N. Broad Street belongs to Gatlin Trust, a side venture of Gatlin Plumbing & Heating in Griffith. Tastee-Freez originally built the building, which Boz Hog Dogs has been in since the mid-1980s.
"It's been there forever," said secretary-treasurer Clara Murphy, "It's a longtime fixture, and it was probably a hard decision for her to make."
Gatlin has been in talks about the property with a few interested parties, including a coffee shop and the owner of a few Subway franchises throughout Northwest Indiana. The building would be ideally suited for a restaurant since it has a commercial kitchen and freezer, and is right next door to the Pokro Brewing Co. microbrewery that will open early next year.
Whoever buys or leases the building could get up to $20,000 to improve the facades through the town's downtown revitalization program, Murphy said.
The owner would be willing to sell or lease the property. Anyone who is interested can call Gatlin at (219) 924-6972.