Lori Librinca is living a childhood dream as owner and operator of The Bird House Restaurant, located at 348 Broad St. in Montoursville.
When the establishment opened nearly 10 years ago, it acted merely as a breakfast and ice cream shop, the owner said.
"It wasn't full service at first," Librinca said.
The Bird House Restaurant, 348 Broad St.
in Montoursville, serves homemade breakfasts, lunches and dinners, as well as
provides catering and take-out services.
The proprietor said her decision in trying her hand at the restaurant business came about, at first, as a retirement project when she became disabled as a registered nurse, from which she saw her and her family earning some extra income.
The restaurant was opened swiftly, she said, in just under a few weeks, transforming an old pharmacy into an operating eating establishment.
"We were open selling sodas, ice cream and breakfasts in about six weeks," she said. "I can't believe we put this place together that quick."
Librinca said the size of her restaurant has grown to a capacity she never quite envisioned or could have expected.
Now, The Bird House serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, Librinca said. It also has take-out and caters. Her catering services reach out to areas such as businesses, weddings and Christmas parties.
Librinca added her restaurant has an extra special flare that may separate her venue from others.
"Everything we do here, we do from scratch," she said.
From the hams, turkeys, mashed potatoes, gravy, sauces, soups and chips - everything is handmade, which she believe adds a certain, unique quality and pace to the service she and her workers supply.
"You come in here for a dining experience," she said, "and not fast food. It's not prepared in advance, and some people who are in a hurry get upset with that."
Despite that, Librinca conceded some customers have told her "we're known for having the best breakfasts in Lycoming County."
On Sundays, the owner said she serves up a breakfast buffet that lasts from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
As for the name of the establishment?
Librinca said she and her mother Pat Wiseman, deep in the exhaustion of the restaurant's development, joked and toyed around with the theme and idea of bird houses - an item of love the two of them had at the time.
"It came out so well," she said. "We had fun with it. It all stuck, and we were laughing so hard and so tired."
From that, the two created the restaurant's slogan "Goodies Sweet Tweet" on down to some of its menu items, such as the "vulture pick," a large meal that consists of several items, including the venue's biggest sandwich and fries that dares customers to eat it all to get a second one free to eat there.
When asked if owning a business was something she expected to be doing in her lifetime, she said, "No, to be honest. It was a childhood dream that became reality."
Librinca and her family, who also help keep things in working order at the restaurant, have all worked in the business at one time or another with part-time jobs in their younger years, she said.
"I loved to have parties at the home and cook and things like that," she added. "And this all came together. Everyone had something to contribute."
As a former nurse, Librinca said she did not obtain a formal education in business, but despite that, she feels she has the skills it takes to keep her business running efficiently.
"We're a nice, safe, friendly environment," she said of The Bird House. "Some of our customers eat here several times a week."