vows will reopen and under the same name, and , the original shop owner .
“If I have to hire a lawyer and spend the money I will,” Thorne said. “I want my name off.”
Thorne may get some help in removing her name from the diner, and it may not cost her a penny.
Skip back one owner before Mary Miljarak—the woman who owned the shop that was recently shuttered for failure to pay rent—and enter Sally Carpenter, the woman Thorne sold the diner to in 1995.
And there’s the snag. Carpenter’s lawyers say Dancer needs to fulfill Miljarak’s financial obligation to Carpenter before he can negotiate the lease with Borel Private Bank and Trust, which manages the property in trust for Toyo Yamagami.
“(Carpenter) says $75,000 is left on the note,” Dancer says.
Carpenter sold Bobbi’s—equipment, booths, name and all—to Miljarak in 2006 but claims that Miljarak never fully paid for Bobbi’s, according to Dancer who has been trying to get a lease on Bobbi’s since he learned it closed on March 9.
“Right now, we’re dead in the water,” Dancer says.
Carpenter says she has a promissory note and a three-page list of equipment held in security, but Dancer says it doesn’t show any values on it and he can’t be certain of its validity.
He also says Miljarak signed a “gift letter” to him, giving him rights to the equipment and name.
He doesn’t want the equipment or booths anyway; he plans on replacing all of it. What he wants is the name, and that's exactly what burns Thorne who believes her good name was sullied by Miljarak's failure to pay rent and not living up to the standards set by Thorne when she ran the diner.
“Why can’t I get my name off?” asks Thorne.
Thorne suggests Dancer name the restaurant after his mother, Jan Dancer, for whom he wants to buy the diner because she’s always loved the place.
Thorne just may get that wish, too.
“If I have to I’ll call it ‘Jan’s Café, Formerly Known as Bobbi’s Coffee Shop,’” Dancer says.
His first choice though is to keep the name intact; his second choice is to alter the spelling of the name to Bobbie’s.
But that will upset Thorne, too, who argues it doesn’t matter what you call a restaurant, what matters is how it’s run.
“If it’s a good restaurant they will go regardless of what the name is,” she says.
Still, Dancer is forging ahead with plans and says he wants to get Bobbi’s employees back to work.
He’s had a health inspection done and has a painter and new carpet planned along with the new equipment and booths.
“We are committed to reopening it,” Dancer says.