The Original Rib House on East National Road will close this weekend, marking the end of an era.

Vandalia restaurant to shut its doors after 38 years

Owners of The Original Rib House invite customers to come in this week to reminisce, say goodbye

A Vandalia restaurant that has served tens of thousands of meals under two brand concepts over the last 54 years will shut down after the close of business on Saturday, July 13, its owners said today, July 8.

>> JUST IN: New brewery-distillery in the works between Centerville and the Dayton Mall

“We invite people to come in this week so they can pay tribute and say goodbye,” Renee Brusman, co-owner and manager of The Original Rib House at 275 E. National  Road in Vandalia, told this news outlet. Brusman’s father and mother, Bill and Carolyn Brusman, are also co-owners of the restaurant, which has operated as The Original Rib House for 38 years. Bill Brusman oversaw a Frisch’s restaurant in the same facility for more than 16 years prior to transforming it into the barbecue restaurant.

>> PHOTOS: First-day fun at the Montgomery County Fair

“It’s the end of an era,” Bill Brusman said. His father Harold operated the former Vandalia Cafeteria and the former Vandalia Motel and Coffee Shop in other locations in town, meaning that the Brusman family has been serving food to Vandalia residents for nearly a century.

The Original Rib House in Vandalia will shut down this weekend after 38 years.

The Original Rib House, which seats more than 200 combined in its main dining room and lounge, has about 20 employees, the Brusmans said. They were informed of the decision Monday.

>> New chicken restaurant to open in Dayton this weekend

“There were some tears,” Renee Brusman said. “This restaurant staff is very much like a family.”

Business has slowed, in part due to an aging clientele, competition from restaurants in and around the nearby Miller Lane development, and the loss of big events such as the Amateur Trapshooting Association’s Grand American Trapshooting Championships, Bill Brusman said. The difficulty in hiring and retaining staff members also contributed to the decision to shut down, Renee and Bill Brusman said.

It was not an easy decision, he said.

>> Free concerts return to Levitt Pavilion this week

“I’ve grown up with this restaurant. I had to share my dad with this restaurant,” Renee Brusman said. “But we had a lot of family dinners here. All the customers knew each other. Over time, this became almost a community center that served food and alcohol.”

Renee Brusman and her father Bill Brusman, co-owners of The Original Rib House in Vandalia, which will shut down this weekend after 38 years.

The family didn’t consider trying to sell the business.

“You don’t want to see someone else take over  your dream,” Renee Brusman said.

>> PHOTOS: Did we spot you at Springsfest?

The restaurant will be open from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. today, Tuesday and Wednesday, from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, from 11:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Friday, and from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, July 13, the restaurant’s final day.

“Come in and get some broasted chicken, look at old pictures, and enjoy the memories,” Renee said.

Thank you for reading the Dayton Daily News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.

Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Dayton Daily News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.

X