They came to mourn tasty slice of mall history

According to a news report from fredericksburg.com, “It was there before the Mall became a Towne Centre, before there was a food court, before the skylights or the new color scheme. After 26 years, La Pizzeria was a Spotsylvania Mall institution with a devoted following.”

“But Tuesday night, the restaurant served dinner for the last time–the victim, its owner says, of a new mall policy that favors franchise restaurants over privately-owned eateries,” said the story. “There was no official ceremony to mark the closing, but an impromptu dinner-time gathering of regular customers drawn to La Pizzeria for a last slice. Jose Vasquez, the restaurant’s owner since 1991, stayed close to the counter as the line grew, catching up with customers for the last time. Throughout the evening, customers approached him to express their condolences, outrage and sadness at the closing. According to Vasquez, the mall did not let the restaurant renew its lease beyond this year, because La Pizzeria is a private business, not a corporate franchise like Starbucks or Chick-Fil-A. Mall officials were unavailable for comment on the situation as of yesterday afternoon.”

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