MUKILTEO — After 44 years, and a final happy hour, Arnies will close on Friday.
Come walk on the blue carpet a final time from 2-6 p.m. Sunday at a farewell open house with appetizers.
The landmark restaurant at 714 Second St. will reopen in October under new owners as Hook and Cleaver, operated by Lombardi’s Restaurant Group. There are plans to remodel the space and have a logo that combines a fishhook and meat cleaver.
Arnies co-owner Rob Davis said Sunday’s open house will give many former employees and guests a chance to tell Arnies stories.
Here are some Arnies memories shared by readers of The Daily Herald.
We moved from Gig Harbor to Mukilteo in 2002. There has been many changes to our town but Arnies was the mainstay. We had many anniversaries in that corner window table and talked about how much we love this place. My husband passed away and I longingly look at that corner window table, thinking of the wonderful times we spent at that site. Arnies, you’ve been a pal.
I was the weekend bookkeeper in those lower offices for a few years in the early ‘90s. Every time I went down there I would have to have the chef come down and kill the giant wolf spiders. Good luck to Lombardi’s!
It was Thanksgiving 1988. My father had been diagnosed with cancer and unable to go to dinner with us since he was so sick. I moved back home to help. My mom (Shirley Howard) and I went to Arnies for our Thanksgiving dinner. We explained about my dad and asked if we could take a meal home to him. They prepared a feast on a real plate! Told us not to worry about bringing it back. They were so kind to us in a time we so needed that care. We always loved that memory.
Julie Sohlberg Smith
I met my husband on a blind date at Arnies in November 1990. Best blind date ever. Our daughter’s first job was at Arnies. We celebrated our 31st anniversary there last week and our daughter’s birthday.
I remember when Arnies opened in 1979. Lots of great memories spent there with Mariner High School chums, class of 1978, throughout the decades.
I recently took my grandson to the beach at Mukilteo and glanced up to Arnies restaurant on my way home, remembering the many happy occasions I had shared with friends and family there. Notably, was the opening night of Arnies in Mukilteo, I believe it was November 13, 1979. I remember because it was our third wedding anniversary. We were invited because we were friends of the then-managers, Robert Peterson and Peter Chalman. It was quite the gala event, with our manager friends wondering how successful it would become. Looking back all these years later, it has certainly won the test of time.
I treasure my memories of Arnies beginnings and subsequent Arnies locations, including Cohos. They were restaurants that you could always count on for delicious menus and service that changed with the times. Not long ago I enjoyed a meal at Cohos in Issaquah with my son, who worked at Redmond’s Cohos for a summer job in high school and had my grandson enjoying their dinner fare, oblivious to my sentimental journey with Arnies.
I was a server there for 10 years. My favorite memory was during brunch on April Fools’ Day. As I was taking an order I looked out at the water and said, “Look! there’s a pod of whales!” while pointing my finger. They were looking at the water thinking they were seeing something. I then happily said, “April Fools!” They loved it, so much that I tried the gag on the next table that came in. They went along with it, pointing and saying, “Over there!” Pretty soon I had two tables trying to convince the third that there were indeed whales, and didn’t they see them?
I’ve been a server for 35 years and that was the funniest, and best moment. The clientele at Arnies were wonderful!
In 2016, I had a new coworker that needed an ID card at the Everett Naval Station (we were located at Boeing Field). She was from the Ukraine and just relocated to the Seattle area for this new job. After sitting in traffic and pouring down rain for over two hours, grabbing a fast-food lunch seemed ridiculous. Since she just moved here I thought about Arnies and what an amazing introduction to the PNW. I had never been there but knew it had a beautiful view and what a great unwind after the bad traffic to Everett and having to deal with it again after lunch. She LOVED our meal and the view, even being overcast and rainy. I was super impressed with the Hulu Chicken & Coconut Rice, more than delicious! My new colleague mentioned her wonderful lunch at Arnies every time I saw her. I’m so glad her initial experience (even after the rainy traffic) was wonderful and I chalk that up to our fantastic lunch.
When I moved to Snohomish after 38 years in Alaska, resettling was hard. A new friend and long-time resident of Snohomish took me to Arnies for lunch. We were seated upstairs overlooking the water. Seeing the ferry come and go, the waters stretching out between the islands, and a few sailboats on the water made me so happy. That sweeping view reminded me of the view from Simon & Seafort’s, a white tablecloth seafood restaurant in Anchorage overlooking Knick Arm, where work colleagues met each winter solstice for a late lunch to watch the sunset. Every place has its beauty. I am so glad Arnies was here to welcome me.
Arnies was the first choice for many Boeing luncheons and dinners I attended. Universal and domestic airline dignitaries and their families, pilots and flight attendants were treated to the Arnies experience when they visited the Boeing Everett facility.
Arnies was also our first choice for employee special occasions, monthly unofficial supervisor luncheons and retirements. It was our “go to” dependable spot.
Many stories and anecdotes make me laugh to myself when I think of those years, personalities, incidents and friendships. I’ll be 80 this year.