Rick's Cafe

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Rick's Cafe is a Spearfish Lake institution in its downtown area. It is located about a block or so from the C&SL Depot/Office, the Spearfish Lake Record-Herald and Spearfish Lake ApplianceAF5.

Rick's opens at 5 AM, although the first hour is usually pretty dead - dead enough that the cook doubles as the waitress. It has a typical Breakfast/Lunch diner menu of a type found in many rural communities and was one of two in town, the other being the Spearfish Lake Cafe. Residents would usually prefer one over the other, some alternated between the two.

"The big table, covered with oil cloth, was back in the back of the room. It could seat sixteen, and from about six-thirty until ten on weekday mornings, all seats were usually filled, and the waitresses could set their watches by the changing of the occupants of the chairs.

The character of the table changed as the morning went on, however. Early on, it was loggers and factory workers, but by 7:30, it was teachers and factory managers. Starting from around 8, retailers began to filter in; but those left by 9:30 were retirees. Yet, the table was highly democratic; who got there first not social status, ruled who got seats at the table, and a factory worker could sit elbow-to-elbow with the factory owner or the bank president, discussing politics, movies, women, or the latest Marlin game."AF5

Among Rick's regulars included Brent Clark, George Webb and Gil Evachevski. The lunchtime crowd had different regulars, including Brenda Hodunk and Carole Carter.

It first appears in Rocinante where Jackie Archer works part-time as a waitress. It reappears, at least briefly, in many later stories.