Commonwealth Journal

August 18, 2013

Jailer, wife to re-open fabled Triangle Restaurant

Commonwealth Journal

Somerset — The political heartbeat of western Pulaski County is being revived. The Triangle Restaurant, often called the Nancy White House, will again be the scene of political discourse and good food, beginning about the middle of October.

Pulaski County Jailer Mike Harris and his wife, Pam, new owners of Triangle Restaurant, want to maintain the political tone. They began refurbishing the restaurant building, inside and out, about three weeks ago.

  “We will still call it the Triangle Restaurant,” said Pam. “Everybody knows where the Triangle Restaurant is.”

 Many a political career has been launched or derailed in this small restaurant overlooking the “Herb Higgins” curve on Ky. 80. Its reopening is destined to elicit more political conversation.

“If diners want to talk politics they’re welcome,” laughed Mike. “I’m thinking about taking out the booths and putting in tables and chairs. If they want to pull tables together and talk politics, it’s OK with me.” The restaurant will seat about 40 people.

There won’t be any “smoke-filled rooms” for political horse trading, “because the restaurant is too small,” said Pam. Mike indicated tables and chairs will be outside for smokers.

Political discussions are a sure bet. Mike will be a candidate next year for another term as jailer and Pam is knee-deep in politics as co-chair of Pulaski County Republican Party.

Pam will continue to work for Allstate’s Horseman Insurance Agency where she has been employed for the past 25 years. “This (restaurant) will be our part-time jobs, nights and weekends,” she laughed. Lou Sellers will manage the Triangle.

Basic appearance of the restaurant will not change. The exterior will be painted, and new windows, replacing the former barred windows, will be installed next week.

The paneled interior walls will be covered with paintable wallpaper and a new floor will be installed. Restaurant equipment is practically all new, Pam said.

“We plan to serve plate lunches between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.,” Mike said. During mealtime and othertimes there will be hamburgers, French fries, hand-dipped ice cream and sundaes, Pam added.

Triangle Restaurant is a time capsule of Nancy history. Morris Norfleet, a longtime Nancy resident, said Triangle Restaurant apparently started as a regular country store and Myrtle Stevens changed it to a sandwich shop with ice cream.

Helen Walters, another longtime Nancy resident, said Myrtle Stephens also sold gasoline and there was a pinball machine. She said at one time there were eight or nine country stores in Nancy.

Susan Alderdice, a Somerset real estate agent, said her grandfather, Hobert Warner, operated a general store at the rear of Triangle Restaurant. The restaurant was a gathering place for students at Nancy High School waiting for the bus before and after school.

There were about 250 students attending Nancy schools and no lunchroom. Principal Herbert Higgins sold candy bars and sandwiches at school, but Myrtle Stephens’ general store turned restaurant also had a brisk sandwich trade with the students.

Walters said at one time there was a flour mill directly behind the restaurant. Lyle Stephens, Myrtle Stephens’ husband, operated the mill, according to Norfleet. The flour mill burned about 1947 and was never rebuilt.

The exact date Triangle Restaurant began operating could not be determined. The restaurant has been closed about five years, and the Harrises are moving toward a quick re-opening.

“I’m really excited about opening the restaurant,” said Pam. “That is, as long as we have good food and friendly people.”