Jungle Jim’s Café, a landmark on the north end and Route 66 for more than three decades, has closed effective Jan. 3.
Owner Mary Bloomfield-Davison announced the closing in a post on the business’ Facebook page, writing in part: “This is one of the hardest decisions I have had to make but there are so many factors that have brought me to this decision such as my age, my grandkids and wanting to see them more and attend their weekend sporting events…” She also cited the increasing costs of running a business and labor shortages.
Bloomfield-Davison purchased the business in 2019 from Jim “Jungle Jim” Davison, who founded the Route 66-themed café in 1988. In a 2017 interview with the State Journal-Register, he noted that the loss of other Route 66 landmarks, including Shea’s Route 66 Museum on Peoria Road, which closed in 2013, had affected the tourist traffic.
In August, the restaurant reduced its operating hours to weekends only. The property at 1923 Peoria Road was listed for sale in May 2022. It is currently listed with Jim Skeeters of Keller Williams Capital at a sale price of $360,000.