Bethany Clough

Marie Callender’s is closing 19 locations. See which Valley locations are among them

Both the Marie Callender’s Restaurant & Bakery locations in Fresno have closed.

The location at Cedar and Shaw avenues, and the other one on Blackstone Avenue, across the street from River Park, were both closed Monday morning.

A worker at the Shaw location was turning away a customers and posting signs about the closure on the doors Monday.

The restaurant’s parent company closed 19 underperforming Marie Callender’s restaurants, along with 10 Perkins restaurants, a diner chain with most of its locations in the Midwest and East Coast.

The company did not release a list of which restaurants it is closing. Messages left with the company’s public affairs department were not immediately returned.

The Visalia Marie Callender’s remains open, selling pies and comfort food.

The closures are part of the parent company, Perkins & Marie Callender’s LLC, filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, it announced Monday.

The bankruptcy is part of a transaction in which it is selling the Perkins restaurants and part of its Foxtail bakery business to a new owner.

“In order to facilitate the sale, the Company has voluntarily commenced Chapter 11 proceedings,” it said in a statement.

Employees at both Fresno locations declined to answer questions about why the restaurants were closed. A message left for a manager was not immediately returned.

The chain has faced slowing customer traffic and rising food and labor costs in recent years, Reuters reported. It’s the second time in eight years it has filed for bankruptcy.

After the closures, the chain will have 355 Perkins restaurants and 28 Marie Callender’s restaurants remaining, according to Reuters.

The two Fresno restaurants are in high-profile locations with lots of street traffic, which may mean they get scooped up quickly by other restaurant chains.

The former Marie Callender’s at Shaw and Marty avenues closed in September 2017. It is now a Black Bear Diner.

Bethany Clough covers restaurants and retail for The Fresno Bee. A reporter for 20 years, she now works to answer readers’ questions about business openings, closings and other business news. She has a degree in journalism from Syracuse University and her last name is pronounced Cluff.
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