Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe, a popular breakfast eatery on Franklin Street, has announced it will permanently close due to challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic.

The restaurant penned a message to its customers on its website, saying they appreciate “all who have supported us over the years.”

After much consideration, we have decided to close Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe. It is hard to imagine waking up in the morning and not heading over to Ye Olde to prepare breakfast for the town of Chapel Hill, as it has been our norm for over 48 years. However, from a public health perspective and due to the ongoing challenges of the pandemic, it is the right choice for us. We will miss seeing our dedicated staff, loyal customers, and cherished community members. Much love to all who have supported us over the years as we will hold dear the memories made together.

Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe was one of the many restaurants on Franklin Street that closed in March at the start of the pandemic. A GoFundMe page was created in April to support its employees, which raised over $7,000.

Per the GoFundMe page, Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe was unable to secure a small business loan as well.

“Like many other small businesses, Ye Olde applied for small business loans and grants, but we heard today that all of the funding has been exhausted,” said restaurant ownership in April. “None of the small businesses we know, including us, saw a dime of it.”

When Governor Roy Cooper lifted some coronavirus restrictions and restaurants were able to serve to-go orders and outdoor dining, Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe elected to remain closed. The restaurant cited the “openness and narrowness” of its kitchen which made it impossible to practice social distancing and safely serve customers.

Ye Olde Waffle Shoppe was opened on Franklin Street in 1972 by Jimmy Chris. In 2019, the restaurant spent one month closed due to emergency repairs to its pipes and wiring — which was at the time the longest stretch it had been closed in its history. does not charge subscription fees. You can support local journalism and our mission to serve the community. Contribute today – every single dollar matters.