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Sky Galley, an East Side dining staple, in talks with city over lease agreement

Posted at 5:54 PM, Dec 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-18 12:47:19-05

CINCINNATI — An iconic East Side joint may not close after all.

The City of Cincinnati has restarted negotiations with the owners of Sky Galley, a decades-old restaurant within Lunken Airport, according to an email from City Manager Patrick Duhaney.

Sky Galley owners had said the restaurant could close for good after city wouldn't renew its lease.

Sky Galley has been a tradition for many families enjoying affordable food while watching planes take off and land at the airport.

Management for the restaurant declined to comment and said the business is in talks with the city over the situation.

In the meantime, a petition to save the restaurant has gathered nearly 15,000 signatures from local fans hoping to rally behind the culinary staple.

"The food is reasonable, price-wise, and it's very good," said Jim Gudmens, a customer of the restaurant who signed the petition. "And it's just a fun – you want to bring your grandkid, you want to bring your kid, you want to bring your college buddies. It's that kind of place, and it's always consistently good."

An email from Duhaney earlier this month said the restaurant's lease agreement would be canceled, citing a Sept. 16 Cincinnati Health Department facility consultation that identified several existing conditions that present a food safety risk.

Online records show the restaurant passed an August inspection, but did have some minor violations like flies, a dirty microwave and floors the inspection called "not smooth and cleanable."

In the meantime, Sky Galley remains open for regulars who still flock to the airport restaurant to enjoy the food and views for as long as they can.

"I've been probably coming to the Sky Galley since I was probably 8 years old," said Gudmens. "My grandparents would bring me here to watch the planes land."