ITHACA, N.Y. — It’s been a long ride of tragedy and uncertainty, but under a steady rain on the Ithaca Commons Thursday morning, a red ribbon was cut in front of Simeon’s American Bistro — and it meant the world to people.

“This was, two years ago, the site of one of the darkest chapters in the city’s recent history,” Mayor Svante Myrick said. “After the accident destroyed the restaurant and killed Amanda (Bush), for weeks afterward, all you could hear was people saying, ‘I was there just two hours before. I was there just the day before. I was supposed to have dinner there that evening.’ This is everybody’s front yard and when tragedy strikes this close to home, we all felt it.”

But Myrick said he was fortunate enough to watch owner Dean Zervos, business partners, the Tompkins Trust Company and city of Ithaca officials bring back the iconic restaurant.

Related: Ribbon cutting will officially welcome Simeon’s back to downtown Ithaca

The restaurant re-opened for business on Aug. 26 with some former staffers, new employees and an updated look.

“We look at Simeon’s as the crown jewel of the Commons renovations,” said Ithaca’s Director of Planning JoAnn Cornish. “We missed you so much and we’re so happy to have you back.”

Simeon’s American Bistro is located at 224 E. State St. It’s open for business

(Photos by Jolene Almendarez/The Ithaca Voice)

Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.