It’s official - Al Mac’s will remain in Fall River.
City Council President Cliff Ponte and his family have purchased the business and are already at work remodeling and reviving the Fall River staple.
“It’s an exciting time,” the Council President said to WSAR News. “We’re hoping for a May opening.”
Ponte told WSAR he immediately went down to the diner in person a few weekends ago when he heard the news of the restaurant planning to close their doors for good.
“I went down there when I find out and spoke to Ms. Dunse, who was an educator at Durfee High when I attended and someone I have tremendous amounts of respect for,” Ponte said. “She decided it was time for her and her family to pursue other things and focus on themselves.”
Ponte will not be running the restaurant, that will be his Dad’s new endeavor who he says has a ton of experience.
“I’ll rarely be there, if at all,” he said. “My Dad will be running it. It’s going to be his baby and he's very excited about it. He has a very strong following at the various bars and restaurants he’s worked throughout his career.”
The council president said a genuine connection and relationship with the Dunse family made negotiations an easy process.
“The connection I have with Ms. Dunse and the entire Dunse family made it easy to have an honest and candid discussion on behalf of my family,” he told WSAR. “My Dad has been in the restaurant and bar business for many, many years and we saw this as a great opportunity to keep a landmark in Fall River and make an investment into the city.”
Ponte said he and his family recognized the impact this diner has had on not only the local community but those outside of it who hear word of mouth about the city’s landmark.
“People come from all over to see an old-fashioned diner and enjoy the food,” he said. ”It’s cool to sit in a diner. My family looked at this as a great opportunity to build on the great legacy of Al Mac’s. We’re really excited.”