Closing time comes early as one Cedar Rapids sub shop goes out of business

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG TV9)- No food left, closed for good. That was the sign on a longtime sandwich shop in downtown Cedar Rapids Wednesday on a day that turned into a “last call for lunch.”

A crowd lines up for lunch at the Sub City on 1st Ave. S.E. in Cedar Rapids. A new office building is eventually going up in this location.

Sub City, located on 1st Avenue and 5th Street S.E. in downtown Cedar Rapids, is one of two businesses that will make way for a new Skogman Realty office building.

The Sub City owner had planned to close on Friday. But a rush of regulars hearing about the coming closing new snapped up all the remaining food prompting the earlier permanent closing.

Regulars say Sub City had the vibe of the old TV show “Cheers.” It’s not that everybody there knew your name. But come often enough and they probably knew what you wanted on your sandwich.

For Gregory Stokesberry, there was never any question.

Stokesberry designed his own sub more than 20 years ago and it became part of the regular menu for all to order…the Gregory J.

“Hey, it’s kind of immortality you get it where you can,” Stokesberry said.

And obviously, on the last day of businesses, Stokesberry ordered his own Gregory J.

Owner Shawna Lane says Sub City opened in the early 1980s and never really changed much. She’s the third owner of the business.

Lane says when the owners of her building decided to tear it down for a new office building, she knew it was time to call it quits in business.

“Well, the business isn’t as busy as it used to be and I’m getting tired of doing it,” she said adding “I’ll miss the people. But I can’t say I’ll miss making sandwiches anymore.”

But first, there was one last lunch rush on Wednesday as regulars lined up for a final time for that favorite on bread.