Thursday, May 23, 2024

The tiger says goodbye

Lil’ Sambos to close by end of 2022

A Lincoln City landmark since 1957, Lil’ Sambos restaurant at 3262 NW Highway 101 will be closing its doors one last time at the end of 2022.

“Sambos has always been a family business,” Cary Moore, manager of the family owned business said. “My father passed away in 2020 and my mother is 94. Both my kids have grown and moved on so this feels like it’s time for a new chapter for me and my family. This place has allowed me to work alongside my son and daughter. They were essentially raised at Sambos.”

The Moore family has owned Sambos since 1995, rebuilding from the ground up after a devastating fire destroyed the building in 2003. It has been a destination for tens of thousands of travelers and locals over the years.

“The best feeling has been when people tell me Sambos has been their favorite place to visit at the coast for years and years. I have especially enjoyed watching people have their pictures taken next to the wooden characters I’ve created.” Moore said. The restaurant has gone through many changes but two things have never changed; their homemade pancake recipe and the fact they have never sold alcohol. Owner George Moore and his wife Ruth knew that there was more money to be made in alcohol sales but stuck to their Christian principles that alcohol was not going to be part of their business model.

Another constant at the restaurant were the student employees.

“It’s a place where so many high school kids got their first jobs.”  Moore said.

Restaurant staff has been told, and while there is no firm date set for closing, it will occur by the end of 2022. Final closing will depend on staffing and supply levels. The Moores are inviting everyone to stop by to take pictures and share memories.

For questions concerning the property you can call Debbie Williams at 503-544-1190.

Bigfoot was too overcome with emotion to comment.
Bigfoot was too overcome with emotion to comment.

Don Williams
Don Williams
Don Williams serves as publisher and editor of The Lincoln City Homepage.


  1. I am sorry to see it close. I have been stopping to eat there from the time I was a little girl a very long time ago…thank you for the wonderful memories.

  2. I am sorry to hear of the closing, it has been my very favorite place to go when we were in Lincoln city
    Prayers and blessings on your new journey

  3. This makes me sad. I ate there quite a bit while I was couch surfing before I found a place to live here. Always good quality food.

  4. I have ate there from a 5yr old to now at 71yr. I also also lived here for the past 20 years. It will seem like an old friend has passed on when they close their doors.

  5. It’s sad to see it close .. I worked there for 5 years great people to work for … it’s gonna be missed when it close . Cary I hope you the best wishes in you next chapter in your journey

  6. Sad most mom pop places closing. People would rather eat fast food which is all processed food. I love mom and pop places as the food is like comfort food not like the Burger Kings and McDonalds of the world. I would rather have home style cooked foods over fast food any day of the week. Sad to see Sambos and the tiger be removed wonder what happens to it now. It needs a home where people can enjoy it.

  7. So sad that you are closing your wonderful restaurant! Hopefully, whomever buys you out will have an almost equally great place to eat! Best wishes to all of you. We will miss Sambos.

  8. Glad to know it won’t be closing! There WILL be someone to keep it going!!! I’ve been going there FOREVER!!! And will go again next week!!!

  9. Best and favorite place to eat. We are so sad but wish the owners well. And we really need the pancake recipe or we will be devastated!

  10. Sign of the times, unfortunately. How many of you to remember “the little rabbit with big ears”… The Pixie Kitchen & Pixieland ?
    My folks would take us there as well as Sambo’s.

  11. SO sorry to see it go as I’ve been coming here since 1984 when I moved to Oregon and since 1988 when I moved to Lincoln City. But, as they say, times are a changing, but mores the pity. I remember the doll shop that used to be next door too before the coffee place came in. The little factory next to that and so on. I wish all the best in their retirement!! You will be missed………..and I see another icon, Gerber Tire up for sale too!!

  12. I hope that the Umbrella Tiger will be preserved. If not left at the current location as a landmark, it would be a nice addition to a public area as local artwork!


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