Last Minnesota Embers location is closing for good on Sunday

The property has been sold, prompting Ricky's Embers in Fridley to close.
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The last remaining Embers restaurant is closing for good at 3 p.m. on Sunday.

The first Embers opened at Hiawatha and Lake in Minneapolis in 1956 and by the late '90s had 29 restaurants across Minnesota, Iowa, and the Dakotas.

But the Fridley restaurant is the only restaurant left in Minnesota, and customers on Sunday will have their last chance to have its famous Emberger Royal burger.

The restaurant announced earlier this week that it'll be closing for good, thanking patrons who have supported the location for the past 23 years. 

In late February, the restaurant said the land and restaurant had been for sale and was recently sold, prompting the restaurant to close. 

"This is a bittersweet time for us. Embers has been a part of our family since my mom started at the very first Embers restaurant in 1956. My dad (Ricky), who we named our restaurant after, worked for Embers for 30 years," Joe Rickenbach, owner and operator of Ricky's Embers said in a Facebook post. "He got me my first job at the Northtown Embers when I was 15 in 1978. That was 43 years ago! When Embers franchised in 1998 Denise and I were able to buy the Fridley location. It has been a 'family hub' since then." 

Rickenbach and his wife bought the Fridley location after Embers franchised in 1998, Hometown Source reports. Rickenbach is from Fridley, and in the Facebook post he noted how happy he was to own the restaurant there, calling the community supportive. 

In the Facebook post, Rickenbach thanked past and present employees who "made us what we are," noting the restaurant wouldn't have made it as long as it did "without their loyalty and dedication."

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Richenbach also thanked the Kristal and Birnberg families, which started Embers. and had a message to its patrons.

"If we do not get to see you before we close just know that we have appreciated getting to know you over the years and are so thankful that you have been a part been such a big part of our lives," Richenbach said on Facebook.

This 2018 story by The Growler Magazine looks at the history of Embers in Minnesota, and the last remaining restaurant in Fridley. 

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