Corrine Seidel says there’s one place you can always find her. It’s behind the counter of which she owns and operates and has been a part of her since she started answering phones there when she was just 12 years old.
Seidel grew up in the pizza business. Her father taught her how to make pizza. When she was just 17, she started working full-time at Lovey’s through the high school work program. That was almost 30 years ago and she’s been making pizzas every since.
Lovey’s was the first pizzeria in Hasbrouck Heights, opening up in 1957 up the road where the post office is currently located, Seidel said. During those times, “if you lived in Heights you ate at Lovey’s, if you lived in Wood-Ridge you ate at Alfonso’s,” she says.
Her father, Jimmy Longo worked for the original owner, George Bruno. Later her mother Ruthann also came to work at Lovey’s. When Bruno passed away, Seidel’s father purchased the business from Bruno’s widow and it’s now been in her family ever since. Once her father retired she stayed with the business and now she runs and owns it.
She points to the back room dining room in the restaurant and recalls what it was like back in the day when it had red velour on the walls and a big Italian mural at the back.
She frequently likes to reflect on history involving the town.
Every Tuesday is trivia day at Lovey’s where Corrine will post some questions about the town on the restaurant's Facebook page. She awards the first person with the right answer with a dozen zeppoles.
Although she grew up nearby in Saddle Brook, Seidel remembers everything about the town as she practically grow up here. She's long since become an official resident of Heights where she resides with her husband Duke who is originally from the borough.
Lovey’s has always been very involved with the community. Seidel believes in giving back and when the town needs something she gives her support. The restaurant sponsors Little League teams and Mens’ Association softball. Proudly displayed above the counter at the restaurant and photos and plagues of the teams wich Lovey’s supports.
Corrine says she really loves the kids in the community. “I kinda treat them like my own when they are here,” she says. She has two grown sons of her own. Her oldest is part owner of Athletic Overdrive just next door in Wood-Ridge and her youngest helps out around the restaurant when he can. Hencan cook anything on the menu, she says.
Where did the name for Lovey’s come from? Corrine says it was a nickname that the previous owner George Bruno had for his daughter Rosemarie – his “lovey.”