Jul 29, 2014

Miss Cranston Diner Goes Up in Flames

Miss Cranston Diner Goes Up in Flames
A significant fire tore through Miss Cranston Diner on Oaklawn Avenue early Friday morning.

Firefighters battled the flames for more than an hour.

The fire broke out shortly after 2 a.m. and at one point, flames were rolling through the ceiling and whipped more than 10-feet into the sky.

Firefighters said the fire does not appear to be suspicious.

The restaurant is owned by Lavon Toumasian, who bought the diner six years ago and gave it a facelift. He is vowing to rebuild and open again as soon as possible.

The Miss Cranston Diner is a cultural and culinary landmark. Originally a Worcester lunch car, the restaurant has a more-than 60-year history which includes being the inspiration for the failed 1992 sitcom, "Better Days," by former Cranston resident Dan Reo.

Located on Route 5, the Miss Cranston Diner is hard to miss. The name harkens to an earlier time when roadside diners were associated with rough-and-tumble men. Decorated with flowers at each table and a femininely-appointed decor, the name was meant to draw a kinder, gentler clientele.

In his younger days, Toumasian was a professional soccer player in Armenia, which was a part of the former U.S.S.R. at the time. Before taking over the Miss Cranston, Toumasian was a chef at Wes' Rib House in Providence and ran the Pawtuxet Village Inn in the 1990s

Along with the Cranston location, the Toumasian family operates the Miss Cranston II in West Warwick.

This story was originally posted at 5:20 a.m. More information will be posted soon.

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