Opening date finally set for Black Bear Diner in Citrus Heights

Black Bear Diner, Citrus Heights
Black Bear Diner will open in Citrus Heights on Feb. 13 // CH Sentinel

The long-awaited opening date of Black Bear Diner near the corner of Sunrise Boulevard and Madison Avenue has finally been announced.

Jerry Mercer, a vice president of Black Bear Diner, told The Sentinel in an email on Thursday that the new Citrus Heights restaurant will open for the first time on Feb. 13. He said the diner will be open 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday through Thursday, with hours extended to 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

The restaurant franchise is known for its homestyle comfort food, generous portions, and breakfast options that are served all day.

Construction on the diner’s brand new 5,000-square-foot building was completed last year, but interior aspects of the building were still in process of being turned into the new restaurant as of last week.

Although previously targeting an opening date as early as July 2016, Mercer said permitting and issues with securing a construction team delayed the project significantly. Other restaurants and businesses at the new 5.7-acre Capital Nursery Plaza also experienced construction delays, with temporary signs posted at the plaza originally listing an opening date of “January 2016.”

As of Feb. 2, Mercer said the restaurant is still looking to hire about 15 more employees. All 132 crew members hired so far “have been locals,” he said.

As previously reported on The Sentinel, Mercer said the menu will feature Black Bear’s distinctive local touch — a reprint from an archived newspaper page about the area. He also promised the restaurant would feature a number of chainsaw-carved bear sculptures, which are a signature mark at all of the diner’s locations.

The Redding-based franchise restaurant chain currently lists 88 locations nationwide on its website, with 21 more scheduled to open in California by the end of this year.