HALFMOON – Halfmoon Sandwich & Salad Shoppe will be closing after 15 years.
The popular local lunch spot announced through a Facebook post and a sign on the front door that they will be closing their doors forever this coming Saturday, Aug. 20, at 3 p.m.
Melissa Craine, who manages the restaurant said she and her partner Sean Lee who owns it have been running the business for 15 years.
“We started out in the Small Red Shack, we built a new bigger space for the guests here with the help of our landlord,” Craine said. “We don’t own the building, we lease, and our 15 year term is up. And we can’t re-sign the lease.”
Craine said they had hoped to have been able to purchase the property where the shop is located on Route 9.
“We’re interested in owning property at this point,” Craine said. “We want to have security, and roots and know that we have the control over the space as well. We were trying to purchase this property but unfortunately we couldn’t come to an agreement with the seller, So it is what it is.”
Craine and Lee plan to open a new business nearby sometime in the fall she said. She explained they are not announcing the new place too much yet so they can give the sandwich shop its moment to shine.
“We did our best. we had a great run, but now we’re going to try something new on the other side of town,” Craine said. “It’s not going to be the Sandwich Shoppe, but it will still be Sean and I, and a new concept, and I am confident that wherever Sean goes success will follow, it’s true.”
Craine and Lee have put a lot of hard work into the business Craine said. She explained being a small business owner requires a lot from a person.
“I’m very proud of what we’ve done here,” Craine said. “People don’t always understand the sacrifice that goes into being a small business owner. You really have to wear so many hats. You have to be willing to work the hardest, longest, the smartest and to never give up.”
The closure, first reported by the Times Union last week, came as an unpleasant news for many of the customers who frequented the deli, Craine said
“For me one of the hardest parts of walking away from this is hearing all of the supporters from the community tell us how upset they are,” Craine said.
A couple in their 90’s frequents the sandwich shop almost every day, when the woman found out they were closing she started sobbing at the counter, Craine said.
“Yesterday [Thursday] was so overwhelming,” Craine said. “With the amount of people came, cared, cried, loved, laughed, shared it was beautiful, it really really was. We’re excited for what the future holds. We’re thinking that when one door closes another one opens and they say that the comeback is always greater than the setback. We’re going to rock on on the other side of town.”
The deli’s employees have become like family, Craine said. She explained it could not have run without them. She said they are offering their staff jobs at their new location when they open.
“I’m not trying to focus on the end,” Craine said. “Every beginning has an end, but it’s the whole journey. And it’s been wild, it’s been beautiful, it’s been high and low and everything in-between, but it’s been amazing. That’s the long and the short of it, it’s been amazing.”
Craine and Lee are asking everyone to follow them on social media.