Sadness: Stars & Structure of Popular Flint Area Business Come Down
Another iconic building's life comes to an end. We'll add this to our list of places we miss around Flint & Genesee County, Michigan. The end of the Walli's Restaurant & Banquet Center (and one point, lodge) happened several years ago. Now, the last physical memories of its former success are being demolished.
What happened to Walli's Restaurant and Banquet Centers in Burton and Mt. Morris Township, Michigan?
Arne Walli started several businesses leading up to the expansion of the restaurant & banquet centers. There was Richardson Root Beer Stand in Genesee Township. Over time, there would be a supper club, Walli's East started in the early 1970s (Lapeer Road and Center Road in Burton, MI) and Walli's West started in the early 1960s (West Pierson Road in Mount Morris Township). Those were eventually expanded to include lodging and even a laundromat in addition to the quality dining.
What else did the Walli family own and operate around Flint, MI?
The hotels were added as Mr. Walli wanted to serve travelers. Laundromats (for convenience) fit that bill, too. The Super 8 at Walli's East was owned by the family, the hotel at Walli's West and even the former Wyngate Hotel at I-475 & Hill Road.
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Who owned Walli's Restaurant & Banquet Centers and Hotels in Michigan?
According to an MLive interview with the family, upon Arne Walli's passing, he remained very involved in the community and the businesses for a very long time. The family shared their story Walli's service to his country, moving from the Upper Peninsula to Chicago and eventually finding the love of his life in Flint, MI. In fact, his late wife Frances supplied the recipes for all of the restaurants.
Here's a celebratory 60-year anniversary commercial for Walli's Family Restaurant.
What was in the old Walli's East Restaurant after it closed?
The "Burton Inn" was on the sign outside along with Firkin' and Fox...and eventually The Fox. Following the pandemic there was no coming back after the impact on the local economy.
We thank the Walli family for decades of memories, great food & drink and hospitality.