It’s always sad to see an old institution go, especially when it is an establishment that has been around as long as the Montross Dairy Freeze has. The dining destination, which has served customers since 1969, will be closing its doors at the end of the month as the iconic eatery has been sold to Miguel Lopez, the owner of Los Portales. The announcement was made last Saturday.

News of the closing, which was disclosed by the retiring owner Stan Schoppe on Facebook, was met with the reaction one would expect from the revelation that such an iconic business is shutting its doors. Many gave their well-wishes, while others reminisced with that mixture of regret and exhilaration that the late, great Jean Shepherd called nostalgia. It is impossible to count just how many people have made memories there. How many had their first job, or wiled away the time in the old arcade. There are plenty that owe their first taste of pizza, ice cream, fried chicken, and more to that place, this particular writer included.

Many are hoping that the new owners will keep or upgrade the Montross icon. At present, the Lopezes have asked for all of the Dairy Freeze employees to be part of the new business, whatever it may be. Schoppe, after thanking both his employees and customers for making the Dairy Freeze into the local landmark that it is today, has nothing but praise for Mr. and Mrs. Lopez, stating, “They have been the most wonderful and fair people to deal with, and I wish them the best. I hope everyone welcomes them to our community.”

It remains to be seen what the Lopezes will do with their new property, but in the meantime, it’s a safe bet that countless people will be stopping by to show Stan just how much he and the Dairy Freeze have meant to everyone before the doors close for the last time on April 30.