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The Golden Dragon was a local landmark for 60 years (6 photos)

The Dragon was a multi-generational family business that was popular from the day it opened until it closed in 1999

Postcard Memories is a weekly series of historic postcard views and photos submitted by Marcel Rousseau. Some were previously published by the Orillia Museum of Art and History and in the book Postcard Memories Orillia.

The Golden Dragon Restaurant was in business for over 60 years at 28 Mississaga St. E. 

As early as 1927, this location was called the Frisco Café. Ten years later, the name had changed to the Golden Dragon Restaurant.

Nuan Lem had purchased the restaurant and turned it into a family business. Nuan died in 1964, but his wife, Ting Lem, continued working there as a partner for another 35 years.

There were four owners when the family decided to close the Restaurant on Sept. 2, 1999. It was a very difficult decision but the owners and other family members on staff were all near the age of retirement.

Many of the restaurant’s customers expressed their disappointment over the closing of “their favourite eating place”.  

The first interior black and white photo was taken shortly after renovations in 1952. Note the vintage Coca Cola and Canada Dry soda dispensers.

The second interior postcard view shows further renovations completed a few years later. The stools were replaced with high back swivel seats and the single booths at the front were removed to allow for a wider aisle and larger seating on the left.

The third view shows partner and owner Way Lem standing at the front of the Restaurant where he was always ready to give a friendly greeting.

View # 4 shows Way Lem’s father Guoy Chew Lem taking a break in the “Dragon”.