Shady Glen Diner for sale in Turners Falls after 12-year run

Charles Garbiel cooks up some eggs at the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls.

Charles Garbiel cooks up some eggs at the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Charles Garbiel is the owner of the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls.

Charles Garbiel is the owner of the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

The Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls.

The Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

Jessica Brooks of Montague sits with Jazlyn Weld, 2, and her mother Jenna Weld, right, of Turners Falls at the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls.

Jessica Brooks of Montague sits with Jazlyn Weld, 2, and her mother Jenna Weld, right, of Turners Falls at the Shady Glen Diner on Avenue A in Turners Falls. STAFF PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ

By ERIN-LEIGH HOFFMAN

Staff Writer

Published: 06-28-2024 3:57 PM

Modified: 07-01-2024 3:51 PM


TURNERS FALLS — After 12 years of ownership, Charles Garbiel and his family have decided to put the Shady Glen Diner up for sale.

“My wife and I have been talking for about six months about it,” Garbiel explained. “I’ve just spent 12 years, seven days a week, so it gets to me after a while.”

The main catalyst for selling the diner was prompted by Garbiel’s desire to spend more time with his family and his young daughter at this point in her life.

“I only have one child, and she’s only going to be 6, 7 and 8 once,” he said. “So if I miss out on the weekends, I’ll never get them back. … It was mostly the major reason … the quality of life part.”

Garbiel has maintained several roles in the restaurant, including as the main cook, manager, dishwasher and waiter during the diner’s 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. hours on most weekdays. Outside of operating the diner, he has served on Gill’s Selectboard.

In leaving the restaurant, he said the sale is a “turnkey,” meaning whoever buys Shady Glen Diner has the ability to turn the space into something new, or they can maintain the diner the way it is.

“I’m running [Shady Glen] until somebody buys it. It all depends on who buys it and what they want to do. If they want to keep it the same, they keep it the same. If they want to turn it into something else, it’s their money,” he said.

When Shady Glen first opened under Garbiel, the diner was open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This meant 16- to 18-hour days before eventually transitioning to just breakfast and early lunch hours within the last few years. Patrons often inquire with Garbiel about when the diner might offer all-day service again, but he said he can’t meet the demands of an all-day diner with his small staff and outside commitments.

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Garbiel said if the diner were to remain Shady Glen under new owners with more time and staff, a breakfast, lunch and dinner menu “would be nice to see.”

In reflecting on the last 12 years at Shady Glen, Garbiel said some of the most memorable moments came from the regulars that he and his family would get to know and develop close relationships with. He remembers one regular in particular.

“Every day during COVID, she’d come check on me, make sure I was doing OK. We didn’t know if we were gonna open the next day or not,” he said of the patron. “It was scary times, but she’d come by every day. She’d knock on the door, make sure I’m doing good and order some food to go.”

A Facebook post commemorating the 12-year anniversary of Shady Glen prompted comments by people sharing their memories of the diner. Garbiel writes in the post, “You have been there for me through thick and thin, including the ones that are no longer with us today. … You will never be forgotten. You have watched my daughter grow into the little girl that she is today. She loves coming in to see the crew and talking with all of you.”

Garbiel can’t say if he will return to the restaurant industry, or pin down what his plans are in the future.

“Sometimes people ask what I’m going to do after this, and I don’t know yet,” Garbiel said. “If the right group would sponsor me, I wouldn’t say no to running for governor.”

In the meantime, the diner will remain open until Garbiel relinquishes ownership, with updates on hours available through the Shady Glen Diner’s Facebook page.

Erin-Leigh Hoffman can
be reached at ehoffman@recorder.com or
413-930-4231.