Modoc Diner — 'Make Yourself at Home'


Country Moon

As you first walk into Modoc Diner in Modoc, Indiana, you are greeted by a sign that reads, "Welcome to Modoc Diner, make yourself at home." Owners Teena and Jack Pemberton live by that motto.

"I sometimes wonder if folks come here more to eat or catch up with friends and relatives," Teena laughs.

Now, me being a Michigander and not a "local," I can safely say that folks come for both reasons. I daresay that anyone that stops by becomes part of the "family." In so many ways this is typical of small town diners, but here at Modoc, it goes a bit further.

Modoc Restaurant is located right smack dab in the middle of, well... nowhere in particular. Teena is sincere when she says, "We need this for our community. There are not too many places for the farmers and locals to go in this neck of the woods. We love the people and we love the town."

modoc diner

It's pretty evident that the people love them back. She has the diner decorated in pure country with lots of roosters. All the decorations are personal. There is a big chicken in the front window that was bought by a customer, a painted tree on one wall that is adorned with pictures of birds taken by another customer and an array of other items scattered throughout that were donated. "I knew filling the wall space wouldn't be a problem and it hasn't. So many folks want to be a part of this and they have brought us so many things, telling us that they just wanted us to have it... just because."

5/4/2018 9:11:36 AM

Lois, great post about local business in small town USA. My grand parents were similar. They lived in a little town of 350 population and ran a restaurant for the locals. Some of the folks in town ate there every day. They had a part time cook and grandma cooked and waited tables. Grandpa run the register. A major highway ran through the town before Interstates were built and the fame of that little restaurant spread far and wide. One of their specialties was chili that was made from a secret recipe that brought folks from miles around to have a bowl. I don't think they really made much money but as in the Modoc diner, it was about the people and the community that gathered every day there. Those days have been gone for a long time but my early life memories still linger. **** Have a great day experiencing local small business. ***** Nebraska Dave

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