Green Apple Cafe

Lisa Boardway reopened the Green Apple at 19 W. Main St. roughly five years after it closed.

WATERLOO — A casual conversation at the Star Diner led to the rebirth of another popular downtown restaurant.

Lisa Boardway reopened the Green Apple at 19 W. Main St. Sept. 16, approximately five years after it closed.

“I was working as a server at the Star when Mayor Jack O’Connor came in to eat,” Boardway recalled. “He mentioned that the location of the old Green Apple was vacant again after Coach’s Diner closed and asked if I was interested in coming back.”

Boardway said she thought about it and, after talking to friends and family, decided to resurrect the Green Apple.

After the diner closed, it was occupied by West Main Kitchen and then by Coach’s. Coach’s closed in December.

Once the decision was made, Boardway worked out a new lease with building owner Howard Friedman of New York City.

“Howard has been wonderful,” Boardway said. “He did all he could to get me back into this place.”

Village officials also helped out, Boardway said, and she and her friends spent August redecorating the interior of the restaurant from the sports theme Coach’s embraced to the Green Apple decor. Some of the old staff returned with her, including Emily Williams and C.J. Smith.

“The response since reopening has been wonderful. It’s been very nice to see,” she said. “People have been great about the COVID-19 restrictions, which limit us to a capacity of 24 people.

“It’s gratifying, and I’m happy to be back.”

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