I grew up living in Northern Kentucky. I am the son of a mother from the south and a father from the north. As a young kid, my family would come to Syracuse, specifically to Skaneateles where my grandparents had a summer home and where we spent our annual vacations. While most families vacationed in National Parks and Disney World, mine spent summers looking for staghorns on the south-eastern shores of Skaneateles and eating Doug’s Fish Fry on our boat in the middle of the lake.
Most of those trips to Skaneateles would also include a trip to Liverpool to visit Heid’s Hot Dogs. I can remember sitting outside at the picnic tables in the parking lot with my Grandma Tringale and my Mom eating hot dogs as a young child. Hold the mustard and extra ketchup for me, please, and don’t forget the birch beer.
In fact, Heid’s was so much a part of my family’s history that when my parents opened Cerio’s Diner in Florence Kentucky, my father made sure the awning read “Cerio’s Diner. Food You’ll Like”.
As an adult who moved back to Syracuse, I would sometimes meet my friend Steve at Heid’s for a late-night hot dog and cheese fries after work on weeknights and then get a purple zebra from Heid’s Sweet Treats. Heid’s was a great place to stop and hang with friends for a quick bite.
Heid’s is one of the many important staples in our community. One of those places that look, taste, and smell like home. It hasn’t changed much in all these years, either. Sure they have a new ordering system and an additional food stand in the back of their parking lot. But I can still go through the same front door, stand in line, order my food, get my drink, and pull pickle spears onto my tray as I wait to pay and get my hot dogs.
This isn’t the blog I thought I was going to write when I opened my laptop today. Honestly, I don’t know if anyone is still reading. It seems like most of you want 300-word blogs on the top 5 whatever in the area than you want something like this.
But the other day I visited Heid’s for lunch. I ordered one frank, one Texas hot frank, a Dr. Pepper, and two pickle spears. I put mustard, ketchup, and dill relish on my frank and I walked outside to sit at the picnic tables. I sat down under the tent with a construction worker, an auto mechanic, a couple meeting for a lunch date, and a mom with her two young children. I took my pictures, ate my lunch, and thought about sitting there with my Grandma Tringale and my Mom almost 30 years ago. I thought about how I want to bring my son to Heid’s one day and have a hot dog with him outside at the picnic tables. Maybe we’ll walk over to get a Purple Zebra and then head over to the park to the lake.
Places like Heid’s need to stay around in our little community. Make sure you help them keep going and stop in for a hot dog this week.