Food for Thought Shuts Down after 20 Years - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Food for Thought Shuts Down after 20 Years

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MISSOULA -

After more than 20 years of service, Missoula's popular eatery, Food for Thought, is closing its doors on Sunday.

Food for Thought sits directly across the street from UM's campus, making it a go-to spot for hungry college students and loyal customers from all over Missoula.

Owners of the restaurant said the business has been struggling to stay afloat over the past several years.

Customers said they were shocked and disappointed to hear the business is closing.

"It's a real loss for the community… we're going to miss it!" said customer, Dan Monroe.

City Health Department records show Food for Thought has been in business since 1991, and some customers remember eating at the popular spot before it was even called Food for Thought.

"I've been coming here since 1976 or 1977 when I was in college, and enjoyed a lot of meatball sandwiches and coffee," said Monroe.

He said eating at Food for Thought eventually developed into tradition with his daughter, Cece, who added, "It was kind of our breakfast thing when I was going through elementary school, it's really… it's a bummer… it's a bummer."

Jasey Stauduhar has owned the restaurant for the past 11 years. She declined to do an on camera interview, but said she was forced to put the business up for sale in the down economy several years ago.

Stauduhar said potential buyers-- who would have kept the business as is-- were scared off by an expensive equipment upgrade required by a city building code to keep the business running.

City officials said the upgrade-- a new ventilation hood over the stove-- costs tens of thousands of dollars.

"We come here probably five times a week," said UM student Sophia Bay.

She said Food for Thought has been her favorite place to eat for the past four years, and says college life won't be the same without the restaurant.

"The people, the food the environment, I study here, like, almost every day," she said.

Employees said Food for Thought's lease and existing equipment were taken over by a new business, although they're unsure who the new owners are.

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