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Spotlight

Art Comes Full Circle at Tony Roma’s

By Dining Out Team
May 19, 2013

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In the fast-paced, ever-changing world we live in, it is rare to come across something truly timeless. Many long for “the good old days” when people were nicer and life was simpler.

Thankfully, Tony Roma’s is an exception to the rule. Since the restaurant first opened its doors in 1972, Tony Roma’s has been serving quality cuisine for families to enjoy.

More than 20 years ago, the business kicked off an art contest and invited elementary students to help illustrate the keiki menu.

“We started the art contest to help families come together and celebrate the local community,” says Lawrence Chun, director of operations for Tony Roma’s. “We have always tailored our restaurant to embrace a family friendly environment.”

Although the contest may have ended long ago, its legacy still lives on today, and we need your help. Take a look at the featured illustration, submitted in 1989 by the talented Jill Tamashiro, who was a fifth grader in Mrs. Watari’s class at Waimalu Elementary School. Do you recognize the name? Or better yet, are you the talented artist herself? If so, Tony Roma’s would like to hear from you.

Most likely the contest winners are now well into adulthood, possibly with children of their own.

Artwork submitted in 1989 by Jill Tamashiro.

Artwork submitted in 1989 by Jill Tamashiro.

“By calling the contest winners back, we are really coming full circle,” says Chun. “Hopefully their children have become acquainted with Tony Roma’s through their good memories.”

From childhood to adulthood, Tony Roma’s aims to grow with its customers by consistently providing quality customer service.

“When I first started as an assistant manager here, I would see the same group of kids,” says Chun. “Then when I became the general manager years later, I saw those same kids go on first dates and apply for jobs at the restaurant.”

In harmony with its family-oriented values, Tony Roma’s welcomes diners from all over the world in hopes to create a lasting, positive memory for them.

“Being in Hawaii, we are privileged to get customers from all over the world,” says Chun. “It’s important for us to show hospitality and make them feel valued.”

To celebrate its dedication to the community, Tony Roma’s is hopeful that the winner of its 1989 art contest will come forward to claim recognition for her notable artistic achievement.

“It would be nice to have her back with her loved ones to enjoy another great meal with us,” says Chun. “We want to take the opportunity to thank her for being a part of our family.”

Tony Roma’s

1972 Kalakaua Ave. (and Pearlridge location)
942-2121
Open daily, 11 a.m.-11 p.m.