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Friendly's Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy24:33
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Even after the company closed over 50 stores, the Friendly's in Watertown remains open. (Dan Mauzy/WBUR)
Even after the company closed over 50 stores, the Friendly's in Watertown remains open. (Dan Mauzy/WBUR)

By now, you've probably heard: The Fribble may be going the way of the Dodo.

Friendly's, a New England family-dining institution for more than 75 years, has filed for bankruptcy.

So what does the Friendly's bankruptcy say? The company closed 63 stores overnight and laid off 1,200 workers — half of them here, in Friendly's home state.

The company says it's the victim of this challenging economy, in which families are cutting back restaurant meals while the cost of food has remained high.

Restaurant industry analysts point to changing tastes. In the era of whole grains and healthy foods, the Fishamajig Sandwich, the Dippin' Chicken Salad, and the Jim Dandy (that's five scoops of ice cream, strawberry pineapple topping, marshmallow and chocolate topping, a fresh split banana, sprinkles and walnuts) aren't going over so well.

What's your favorite Friendly's memory? Has the chain changed since you were a kid, or do you still take your kids out for a Fribble? What do you make of the bankruptcy of yet another iconic New England brand? And if you haven't been to a Friendly's recently, what would it take to get you to go back?

Guests:

This segment aired on October 6, 2011.

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