Monday, March 24, 2008

Golden Acres Restaurant, Sugar Grove

Golden Acres Restaurant
5S094 State Route 47
Sugar Grove, IL 60554

March 20, 2008


According to my parents, the Golden Acres Restaurant has been open since before I was even born. Based on watching most of the customers that I've seen there on each of my visits, this doesn't seem surprising. It's the closest restaurant to Waubonsee Community College, which borders it directly to the west just across route 64 47, but as far as I can tell, it's never been a hangout spot for students (as if such destinations exist for community college students at all). I know there was talk of it closing a few years ago, but as far as I can tell, it's always been open. I could have sworn that its full name was "Candy's Golden Acres." Maybe it still is?

You won't find much beyond traditional pancakes and waffles at Golden Acres. The selection is pretty basic, but the prices are reasonable. Without much to choose from, I just ordered some pancakes. But still, which to choose from? There's the "short stack" for $3.65, or the Golden Pancakes for $3.95. What's the difference? Who cares! They're called Golden Pancakes, and I had to find out why. Sadly, they failed to live up to their awe-inspiring name. But however could they?


Not much more to say about Golden Acres. If you want a restaurant with a roadside diner vibe (only without the smoking cooks or biker gangs) and cheap food, you've come to the right place. Just be sure to bring cash.

GoldenAcresDiningRoom1 GoldenAcresDiningRoom2

Ayinsan here. One of the nice things about this blog is that it gives us a reason to visit pancake houses that are kind of off the beaten path, and this is about as far off the path as they come. Surrounded by fields and trees, this is pretty much the only building in sight (except for maybe a grain silo).

We'd been here once before, awhile back, and my memories of it were pretty accurate. Small, mostly empty (though that could have been the time of day--we came in around early afternoon) and peaceful. I got pigs in a blanket. Yum.


All things considered, it's a nice little place, but their selection is rather limited. They have a few breakfast combos, of varying sizes, called, in descending order: "for dad," "for mom," and "for children." Cute, but it places the customers in an awkward position if they want to order one of these combos, but don't fit the description. I mean, I'm not a mom so I'd feel a little weird ordering the "for mom" combo, and even weirder ordering the "for dad" combo.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Kiwanis Club of Aurora, 58th Annual Pancake Day

Kiwanis Club of Aurora
Aurora Central Catholic High School
1255 N. Edgelawn Dr.
Aurora, IL 60506

March 15, 2008


I was coming home from work late on Friday night when I saw this banner staked outside of the fire station. I really had no idea what I'd be getting into, but I knew what my Saturday morning plans would be.


The breakfast was held at Aurora Central Catholic High School, which despite being just about a mile from my apartment, I had to look up online to find. Fortunately, the parking lot was well-marked with directions once I arrived and it was easy to tell where I needed to go from there. Even without the signs, I probably could have followed the steady flow of hungry people towards the cafeteria. It was hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Aurora, which donates proceeds to youth programs around the world.

I knew it was probably going to be busy, but I was surprised to walk in and see such a packed room, not just with customers but with lots of volunteers running about, seating people and refilling drinks. I paid my $5, got in line, and watched the operation as I passed by the kitchen. Even with two of these turntable griddles running, it was all they could do to make them fast enough.


I exchanged my ticket for a plate of three pancakes and three sausages and was directed to one of the long cafeteria tables, the kind which I haven't sat at since high school. I seated myself in the middle of my row of tables, later realizing this was a big mistake as getting attention for coffee and juice refills proved most troublesome, but at least I was surrounded by lots of other people to talk to. Right? I appreciated the invitation to engage in my community and to get to know my neighbors. That's what these get-togethers are for, right? But getting to eat my pancakes and sausage in peace without being hassled by anyone else is something I appreciate even more, and despite the busy, almost chaotic action all around me, it was still a really laid-back morning for everyone who was sitting down.

Three pancakes and sausage were really enough for me, though as my syrup-coated paper plate left my hand for the trashcan, a volunteer at the table next to me approached with another heaping plate of steaming pancakes. Looks like I was seconds too late for seconds. Next year I'll be better prepared.