Those of you who have been reading and following MBIP for a while are familiar with my friend Amber. We first met five years ago when I was doing my 365 Bar Crawl blog and we’ve had a lot of fun and adventures here at MBIP over the last couple of years. Neither of our names (Amber and Marty) are really common names that you hear a lot. So imagine my surprise when I got an email from Amber with an attachment and it read: “We HAVE to go here!” And this is the place she was talking about! Ha! Amber & Marty’s Fillin’ Station! Well, Amber’s right, we have to take a road trip to Sunnyland and meet the other Amber and Marty and so it’s off to Sunnyland we go!
There’s Amber behind the wheel, looking pretty as always as we start the first road trip of the day to Sunnyland. I can’t wait to meet the other Amber and Marty, but I’m a little concerned that when all of our eyes meet, the four of us might explode and turn into four piles of dust. But actually, that would be kind of a cool way to check out of this place!
Rubber Ducky dashboard alert!
Off we go into the wild gray yonder! I love cloudy days like this!
And here we are at Amber & Marty’s Fillin’ Station. That picket fence sign is perfect!
Nice to see that Dave is keeping busy when Van Halen’s not touring!
And it looks like Eddie is no slouch either!
This vintage gas pump outside is really cool!
Okay, let’s go inside and check out Amber & Marty’s Fillin’ Station and see if we can track down the other Amber and Marty!
Wow, this place is great! I love all the signs and memorabilia on the walls. And you gotta love those Cheap Trick tablecloths!
The hostess was really nice and friendly, but just a tad camera shy! Those menu’s came in handy for this Sean Penn-like moment in time!
We decided to grab a couple seats at the counter.
And this is our view from where we’re seated.
Curt was seated close by and he said that while he’s not really a regular here, he does stop by once in a while. We found out Curt’s the dart league coordinator for the Joe Abraham & Sons Amusement Company. That sounds like a fun job! I wonder if Alex Van Halen works there? Okay, let’s take a little look around in here.
Vintage license plates cover the wall over in this corner. Wimpy is the perfect license for a family diner!
The walls in here are plastered with fun things to look at and here’s a row of guitars on display. Hey, check out the sixth one from the left. It looks like one of Eddie Van Halen’s guitars. Maybe he stores them here when he’s working on his rust removal business.
That’s one big Phillips 66 sign!
When I got back to the counter I found out that Amber had ordered lunch. First up is this giganzo appetizer platter with fried cheeseballs and mushrooms and a whomping-stomping pile of onion rings. I loved all three of the deep-fried treats, but the onion rings were really outstanding. MBIP pal and contributor, Scott Turley needs to check these out!
We also split a grilled cheese sandwich that came with a trio of sliced pickles.
It had bacon in it and it was delicious. It was cooked well-done, just the way I like grilled cheese prepared. My only question now is: Where the hell is the other Amber and Marty?
Well, here’s half of that question answered, here’s the other Amber with her daughter, Bailey! Mom and daughter are both looking very pretty and it was great to meet them. All we need now is to meet the other Marty and our mission will be completed!
And baboom, there’s Marty on the left, mission is completed and so far we haven’t exploded and turned into little piles of dust, which I’m just a little bummed out about!
We really had a nice chat with Amber and Marty. It turns out that this place used to be a gas station, so they decided to keep that theme going, hence the “Fillin’ Station” name and the automotive theme is alive and well with all the signage and knick-knacks on the walls in here. Both Amber and Marty said they had worked in restaurants for years before this and so they decided to open up their own place five years ago. From the looks of the satisfied faces at the tables this afternoon, they’re definitely doing something right. And now it’s time for some Amber and Marty photos out front!
Marty and Amber...
Marty and Amber...
Amber and Marty...
Marty and Amber...okay, this is getting to be a little like that Uma/Oprah bit, so it’s time to call it a day here in Sunnyland. Thanks so much to Amber and Marty for a great lunch, wonderful hospitality and a fun chit-chat over a couple of beers outside of the Fillin’ Station! We’ll definitely be stopping back and you should stop by and support this great, family-owned diner! Now it’s time for the second road trip of the day!
I love how the sky looks right now! And yes, there is a bridge up ahead, which I hate going over. Amber told me a cool piece of news though. If you ever do drive off of a bridge and need to break the window out while underwater, you can do that by removing the headrest and it’s made so the metal prongs will bust through the glass. Very cool! I never knew that, thanks for the information, Amber!
We were headed for the Navy-Marine Club where Amber and I are both members, but we decided to make a quick pit-stop and see if Tim Hennessey is inside of Emack & Bolio’s...
And whoomp, there he is, the MBIP Spritual Guru himself! He’s standing with ice cream scooper, Mick, who is the son of Ann Best. I knew Ann back when she was a Montgomery and we used to do the Stair Master together at River City Health Club!
And now it’s time for our final destination of the day, the Navy-Marine Club! Some days are meant for day-drinking and this is one of them and there’s no finer establishment for early afternoon drinks than the Navy Marine Club! Let’s go inside and get the suds pouring!
Plenty of seats at the bar, so we settled into a couple of them...
And here’s Sandy serving up an ice-cold can of Budweiser with a wonderful smile!
Here’s the view from where we’re seated at the bar.
We put our leftover appetizers on the snack table in the front of the room.
There’s Amber at the bar and Sandy is doing an imitation of the hostess at Amber & Marty’s Fillin’ Station!
Here’s the drink chip guide, of course I’ll never remember all of that!
Becca happened to be walking outside and we called her in and she happily obliged! Great seeing her again!
Becca called Andrew and he too joined us, this day-drinking party is really rolling now!
Now Joe’s shown up, here he is with Amber and the party is now complete! This was a fun day, thanks to Amber for driving and to all who showed up and special thanks to the other Amber and Marty for hanging out with us!
And now for the Friday Virtual Beer list! We had two people throw some dough in the Virtual Beer Jar this week and they were:
• Commenter Sally C. who left this message along with her donation: Have a few beers on me, love what you do with the MBIP blog!
• Michael Covington left a generous donation for beer and he left this message: Cheers from Indianapolis! I grew up in Peoria and I’m having a blast reading about my old hometown on your blog. Keep on keepin’ on!
Thanks to both of them for this week’s Virtual Beers! If you’d like to buy us a Virtual Beer and be credited next Friday, simply click here and you’ll find out how to do it! Cheers and we’ll see you all tomorrow!
Amber & Marty’s Fillin’ Station
2400 Washington Road
Sunnyland, IL 61571
Emack & Bolio’s
4534 N Prospect Road
1310 E Seiberling Avenue