Shorty’s and Loris.

When most people think of one, they usually think of the other. Over the decades, the two words have become almost synonymous.

Shorty’s Grill is not only a landmark, it is a part of the history of Loris.

This year, the Conner family -- Shorty, Betty, Nick and Jennifer -- is celebrating 40 years of owning and operating the business located in the heart of downtown Loris.

Betty Conner said she and her husband rented the building in 1979 and bought it in 1980 and changed the name from Loris Lunch and Pool Room to Shorty’s Grill.

“Shorty worked there a long time before we ever started renting it,” she said.

Everyday except Sunday, from 5 a.m. – 10 p.m. -- diners can enjoy a big selection of mouth-watering food. While hamburgers and hot dogs are what Shorty’s is most famously known for, the menu is much bigger.

In the morning’s you will see customers enjoying plates of eggs, grits, bacon, sausage, and maybe even French toast. And not just in the mornings. Breakfast is served all day.

The rest of the day’s menu is full of even more terrific choices. Everything from BLTs to barbecue to subs to salads. And, each day there is always a great special.

And, Shorty’s is also famous for its hand-cut French fries.

And it’s not just the delicious food that has kept the doors open and the seats filled all these years. It is also the good times and companionship.

Patsy Lewis said she has been dining at Shorty’s since 1991. Her friend, Virginia Hedges, has been a customer since 1995.

“It’s the people and the food. They are the best,” Lewis said. She said they are at Shorty’s sometimes six days each week.

Betty Conner was asked why she feels her restaurant has withstood the test of time for four decades.

“I think it is because we have been there as long as we have, and people got used to coming there. Other people bring other people and it is like a chain reaction,” she responded.

Nell Cox says she has been eating at Shorty’s for three decades. She is joined each Friday by friends Melba Johnson and Katrina Watson.

“It is our favorite place to go,” Cox said. “Usually, there are six or seven of us.”

Johnson said she loves going on Fridays because that is usually lima beans day. When asked how long she has been a Shorty’s customer, Johnson said she does not remember the restaurant not being a part of her life.

Another thing that sets Shorty’s apart from other restaurants is the game room which consists of pool tables and video games.

Conner said they decided to keep the game room rather than remove it for more seating because of the nostalgia. It has always been a part of the restaurant.

“It used to be bigger than it is now,” she said.

Conner said she and her husband have now passed the operation of the restaurant to their other family members, but she still stops by periodically.

“I miss everything about it. I was not ready to stay home,” she said. “I miss the people. They are all wonderful.”

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