In a small town like East Canton, a local restaurant can be a social hub as well as an eatery. Lowry’s Family Restaurant, open since October 2015 at 800 Nassau Street W, draws a lively crowd of locals. Here, manager Melissa White talks about its food and fans.
Zach Salapack was fully confident of his barbecue skills when he opened Sublime Smoke in his hometown of Bolivar in July 2014. He’d already had success with a BBQ food truck in Columbus, where he’d lived since graduating from Ohio State University. When his wife Aimee was offered a teaching job in the Canton area, Salapack began thinking seriously about opening a brick-and-mortar barbecue restaurant in the area. He found an old storefront at 110 Water Street SE in downtown Bolivar, whose previous tenants had included a general store and a speakeasy.
Robin Muntean has cherished childhood memories of Saturday shopping with her family in downtown Canton and wintertime skating on the downtown rink. “I’m a big part of bringing Canton back,” said Muntean, who bought the downtown Italian staple Arcadia Grille at the beginning of 2019, after working there for 17 years as a waitress, cook and manager. The Arcadia’s website said it has been in business for more than 85 years.
A handsome Victorian house built in 1901 houses one of the liveliest lunch spots in Canal Fulton in its former living room. The Dragonfly Tea Room, which opened in 2011 at 116 Canal Street S, is popular for its menu of what owner Tiffany Craney calls “Southern tea house cooking.” The cozy setting, with lace curtains and loads of teapots, has plenty of period charm. And the Dragonfly offers popular monthly events for kids.
It was 1991 and Nick Regas, then 24, had graduated from law school at Case Western Reserve University. Working for an attorney in Cleveland, he knew a law career was not for him. As fate would have it, his father had just been talking about selling his business, Canton Importing Co., a neighborhood deli and grocery at 1136 Wertz Avenue NW. “I called dad up and told him, I’ll buy the business.’ ”
Already a bright light on the downtown Canton nightlife scene, Star Fronimo enjoyed quick success when her namesake bar-restaurant opened in May 2016. More than two years later, Fronimo’s Downtown at 315 Cleveland Avenue NW is reliably lively and frequently packed, especially on weekends.
One day in mid-November, there were 16 varieties of soup available at Samantha’s Restaurant in Jackson Township. “I love soup,” said Sabrina Freudeman owner of the restaurant at 4954 Portage Street NW, which has been in business 17 years.
Brandon Torre has had a fondness for Italian delicatessens since he was a boy. As the executive chef for downtown Canton’s H2 Huth & Harris Wine Merchants, Torre found the opportunity to open an Italian deli of his own upstairs from the H2 at 427 Tuscarawas Street E.
Shawn and Amy Wilson’s goal for Game Time Bar & Grill was to be a neighborhood family place. “And that’s what it’s turned out to be,” Shawn said. “Most of our customers are coming from a mile or two of our restaurant. We try to keep our prices affordable for most people.”
The Repository Select Rite Aid Stores Spee-D Foods Buehler's Fresh Foods Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations Aultman Hospital Gift Shop Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations News Depot Avenue Arts Marketplace Yum Yum Tree Alliance Grapes in a Glass