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Another one bites the dust: Spike's to close

Spike's Junkyard Dogs, long a Thayer Street institution and the first of a 10-store chain of restaurants selling hot dogs, pizza and sandwiches, is closing its Thayer Street location on Sept. 28.

Gareth Mundy, who owns the restaurant, said he did not want to disclose the specifics behind the restaurant's closure, but said the reality of owning a business on Thayer, with high taxes and rising property values, makes business difficult.

"The street has changed so much lately - it's just not worth being here," he said.

Famous for creatively themed fare and the six-dogs-in-90-minutes challenge for a free t-shirt and a picture on the wall, the store has been a staple of Thayer Street dining for more than 15 years, and has expanded to nine other locations in Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut.

News of the store's closing has been received particularly poorly in Providence's well-established blogosphere.

Under the heading "RIP Thayer Street," Matthew Lawrence, a staff assistant at the Brown Bookstore who blogs for the Providence Daily Dose, wrote that the street is "once and for all dead," calling Spike's "the one place that could unite Thayer's disparate population of college students, Eurotrash, bikers and teenagers."

Customers in the store also decried the loss of the once-vaunted Thayer Street spot.

"It will definitely be missed," said Mike Ewing, who has been going to Spike's for years. Ewing said that he was unaware that the restaurant was shutting down until informed by The Herald, but that he might visit the store's other location on Branch Avenue occasionally.

Devin Sutcliffe '10, who visits Spike's "every once and a while" also said he was unaware of the restaurant's impending closure.

Sutcliffe, whose favorite Spike's meal is the Cheddar Chili Dog, said he was "disappointed" with the loss of the eatery.

"I think it was an excellent place to get a hot dog on Thayer," he said.



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