The Sidewalk Cafe is open this weekend for food to go!

Here is a message from The Sidewalk Cafe!

We will be open this weekend from Noon-8:00 PM. Stop by and say hello and enjoy a pizza or burger to go!

Please be respectful of others and social distancing. We are all in this together. The better we do now the less we will have to do later and the sooner we can all enjoy the beach again.

Sunset is at 7:53 PM tonight!

Order your favorites from The Sidewalk Cafe. View menus below!

Call ahead to place your order! 310.399.5547

1401 Ocean Front Walk.  Venice, CA. 90291 thesidewalkcafe.com.

Order your favorites from The Sidewalk Cafe. 

Call ahead to place your order! 310.399.5547

1401 Ocean Front Walk.  Venice, CA. 90291 thesidewalkcafe.com.

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Did you know that the The Sidewalk Cafe has been serving locals and tourists since ’76?

The Sidewalk Cafe on the Venice Boardwalk rules!  In an ever changing Venice landscape, the Sidewalk is our rock.  You don’t stay in business on boardwalk for 43 years unless you are doing it right!  A big fist bump to the team over there!

Here is a Venice/Sidewalk Cafe History lesson! 

In 1905, after winning the Venice land on a coin flip with his partners, Abbot Kinney built Venice-of-America to be a personal monument to Venice, Italy. He built a fantasy city with real canals, a wood boardwalk and piers with rides and water slides. It was a huge hit! Celebrities like William Randolph Hearst and Marion Davies strolled the Venice Boardwalk. Sarah Bernhardt performed in the Venice Auditorium; Charlie Chaplin clowned in Abbot Kinney’s auto races, and Mary Pickford was rowed in her own gondola. Venice was the place to be!The building that now houses the Sidewalk Café was one of the last of Abbot Kinney’s Venice buildings and was originally designed to be four stories tall, but only the first floor was constructed was built.

The Sidewalk Cafe in 1979. Photo by Gotta Have it

The building sold to the Harrah family (of gambling fame) and was turned into a bingo parlor (later called bridgo because bingo was illegal). During prohibition, Abbot Kinney’s underground utility tunnels were modified to accommodate bootleggers who delivered liquor at night under the pier. In the 1950s and early ‘60s the building housed artists’ studios and served as the crash pad for beatnik writers and poets such as Jack Kerouac. The building stood vacant for many years until 1976 when Mary Goodfader’s bookstore, Small World Books, lost its lease in Marina Del Rey. Bob Goodfader, while bicycling on the bike path, saw the building and called the phone number graffitied on its front. The Goodfaders and their friends, Walter (Skip) and Penny Dixon bought the building as a new location for the bookstore.

Bob and Skip decided to open a small takeout place on the side, not in use by the bookstore. The eatery was such a hit that they expanded it into a patio restaurant. Venice experienced a rebirth with roller skating and skateboarding in the 70s.

The Boardwalk’s unique entertainers, skateboarding’s Z-boys, Muscle Beach’s bodybuilders and Venice’s basketball players attracted worldwide attention. The Sidewalk Café offered great food and a front row seat to the circus. Small World Books is one of the last surviving independent bookstores in Los Angeles and is still run by Mary. See what treasures that their staff can help you discover.

Bob passed away in 2002, but the Sidewalk Café is still being run by the people he trained including his son Jay, his protégé Steve, his general manager Kristen and his head cook Luciano.

Jay Goodfader and family at the 40th Anniversary party in 2016

SWC’s General Manager Kristen Archival and daughter Alex

The Sidewalk Cafe staff and guests at the 40th Anniversary party in 2016

View all 2009-2019 Sidewalk Cafe photos by Venice Paparazzi

Order your favorites from The Sidewalk Cafe. 

1401 Ocean Front Walk.  Venice, CA. 90291 thesidewalkcafe.com310.399.5547

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