The Star Lite Restaurant, opened in 1991 at 2325 Sheridan Road, has finally closed down. Okay, so what happened? Some may have heard that it was a broken grill that closed them up or some other repairs that were needed. No, that's not it. Did the city of Zion close the doors? No. The state? No, it was the Feds! That's right, federal IRS agents gave them an ultimatum Wednesday, September 3, without any warning. They ordered them to pay all the back taxes at that moment or they were going to force them to close the doors. Which would it be?!
George Papas, the owner since 1974, was surprised to receive the phone call (he was not at the restaurant at the time) without any warning whatsoever. Having too many bills and increased property taxes, short on money, and not knowing what else to do, George told the staff to close the doors. Star Lite's license was revoked, and signs posted immediately. When I talked to Bonnie and George, I thought that there must have been a lot of back taxes. George told me, no, it was not an excessive amount. He said he was certainly willing to pay on his tax bill but couldn't pay everything.
Okay, I've got to say something. How does closing someone's business help anyone?! Star Lite being closed will not bring any revenue to the state. Employees lost their jobs. Distributors will lose money. And what about the customers?! George said that he would miss his customers most of all! He went on to say, "A big thank you to Zion! That is from the bottom of my heart and I really mean it!"
You can still see Bonnie and George at the gas station. They are hoping for a buyer for the whole corner... restaurant, gas station and apartments combined. Bonnie is hopeful and looking forward to Arizona! But George was not too sure. He wants to sell but he said that if they don't find a buyer, he might remodel the place into a fine dining establishment. You never know... we'll just have to wait and see!