The chat lit up with news about a popular Yakima restaurant that announced over the weekend that it's closing up shop for good.

Locals are stunned at the news.

Today is the last day we'll ever get to eat at Shari's Restaurant at 1401 Lakeside Court off Fruitvale Blvd, next to the freeway.

Some fans of the diner said they will miss Shari's fried pickles. Another person lamented that now they'll have to go to a local grocery store bakery to get some good pies. (Johnson Orchards sells yummy pies, someone reminded us in the comments.)

Yesterday, I heard a rumor that the restaurant was closing because another business was taking over, so I this morning, I hopped in the car and drove over to Shari's to find out in person.

I wanted to get the scoop straight from the source.

Tylea, a beloved employee who has worked at Shari's for some 23 years, told me that the restaurant owner did not renew the lease. She says that's why the restaurant is closing.

I looked online to see if Shari's is owned by a local franchisee. According to its Washington State business license, this closing restaurant is managed by Shari's Management Corporation's Chief Finance Officer. He is based in Beaverton, Oregon. He is also on the board of directors for El Pollo Loco.

Shari's Restaurant Permanently Closed
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When I first moved to Yakima in 2002, Shari's was one of the places my then-boss took me to for a staff meeting. He loved their food. I became a fan of their breakfasts; Shari's gave me IHOP vibes, but in a Mom & Pop diner kind of way.

Just a little over a year ago, the Shari's location in Union Gap shuttered its doors, too.

I'm sad to see the restaurant go. It's the end of an era in the Yakima Valley.

I bought one of their Key Lime pies as a memento. I offered up free slices to my fellow co-workers but I am taking the leftovers home with me.

Shari's Key Lime Pie
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A little something tasty to remember Shari's by!

Now that Shari's is permanently gone, where else can you go to eat for that tasty, homestyle cooking?

*This article has been updated to include information obtained for the Shari's Management Corporation, in accordance with the current Washington State Business License data.

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