How it all began…
Sometimes one sets out to do one thing and ends up with something all together different. Circumstances, life, fate and maybe a little magic step in and deliver something unexpected, yet totally fun and delightful. Such has been the case for us, Marie McKenna and Elizabeth Hughes, and our place called Lost Dog Café.
Once upon a time we were in an all-female band in NYC. The band was called The Derangelles (yes, deranged angels). We had grown up in Binghamton, NY and moved to Park Slope, Brooklyn with two sisters we met who attended Binghamton University. Our goal was to pursue our lifelong dream of creating music. We played at the now defunct CBGB’s, The Bitter End and Speakeasy. In the meantime, in order to pay for studio rehearsal time and rent, we worked in restaurants in NYC. Liz started as a prep cook, moved up to sauté and before long had mastered many aspects of the fine art of cooking. Marie had virtually no waitressing skills but managed to get her first job at an Italian restaurant on 34th St. Though it was obvious that she didn’t know how to open a bottle of wine with a tableside corkscrew, the owners let her stay, probably because of her natural instincts for hospitality and making people comfortable.
Thus began a life-long love of cafes. We had many favorite haunts in the East & West Village of NYC like Café Orlin, Yaffa Café, Florent, Kiev, Odessa, Pyramid Club, King Tut’s WaWa Hut, Holiday, and Downtown Beirut. Where did we go to celebrate great moments of our lives? To a café. Where did we meet up with friends? In a café. Where did we go when we were bored? To a café!
We’re now in our 23rd year and there have been many changes along the way. Carla and Ravi moved on, a deer crashed through our window in 2008 and we were flooded in 2010 which closed us for 7 weeks. We can honestly say we’ve enjoyed just about every moment of being at Lost Dog Café. We love the people we’ve met, the friendships we’ve made, the talented & creative individuals who have worked here over the years and became friends, the artists, musicians, poets, writers, activists and speakers who have shared their talents and ideas . We love feeding people and making them happy, giving everyone a home away from home. So if you’re ever “lost” in Binghamton, you know where to find us.
Marie McKenna & Elizabeth Hughes