Each member of the Deva family has a key role at the Sunrise Restaurant in Lebanon.
Owner Ali Deva, 55, of Highland, is in charge of public relations.
"He goes out (into the dining room) and talks to everybody," said server Chelsea Phelps, 20, of Scott Air Force Base. "He'll even sit down and have coffee or a piece of pie with them."
Ali's wife, Salina, 53, makes soup. She simmers it for five hours, beginning at 5:30 a.m.
"Our soups are famous," said Salina's son, Brian Deva, 33, of Highland. "She makes two soups every day, 14 soups a week."
Varieties range from cream of mushroom to navy bean, beef barley to vegetable. Seafood chowder is an option on Fridays.
Brian is the restaurant's cook. His wife, Tammy, 35, assists with prep work.
"Everything's homemade," Brian said.
The Sunrise is in a former Hardee's building along Illinois 4.
The Devas repainted, installed new tables and chairs, renovated the kitchen and otherwise spruced up the place before opening in September.
"We love it," said Helen Sullivan, 65, of Lebanon, a customer who was eating chili mac with her husband, Luther, last week. "It's in town. You don't have to go out of town to eat. They have good food. The service is good."
The menu consists mostly of American food: salads, appetizers, sandwiches, burgers, pasta, steaks, chicken, pork and seafood.
Seniors 55 and up have a choice of 13 meals that include a main dish, soup or salad, potato, vegetable and ice cream for $6.29.
"The senior meals are really popular," Chelsea said.
Plate-lunch specials range from meatloaf to Cajun chicken, stir-fry to Greek-style stuffed cabbage rolls ($5.95 to $7.95).
The restaurant serves breakfast all day, every day.
"Everybody likes our breakfast," Brian said. "Our sunrise skillets, they go crazy over those, and we have omelets that we sell a lot of."
The restaurant also has cinnamon French toast.
"No one else around here has it," Brian said. "It comes special from Kentucky. The cinnamon is in the bread."
Ali emigrated to the United States from Albania in 1982. His wife and five children joined him in 1995.
"Everyone wants to come (to America)," he said. "It's the best country in the world. I think God first, America second."
Ali managed a restaurant in New York until 1998, when he bought his own place in Lake Mills, Wis.
Then he owned a restaurant in Chatham for 10 years before moving to Highland and converting the old Buzzy's into the Highland Diner in 2011.
"The menu is similar, but we do things a little different," Brian said.
Today, the diner is operated by Ali's daughter, Ashley Usini, and her husband, Tim. Ali also owns Aviston Family Restaurant, operated by daughter Buki Rushiti, and her husband, Tim; and the Corner Cafe in Greenville, operated by daughter Lumi Seiti and her husband, Luke.
The Sunrise Restaurant already has become a meeting place for local groups.
"We're not related to the (former) Sunrise restaurant in Belleville," Brian said, noting many people come in and try to use its old coupons.
At a glance
What: Sunrise Restaurant
Where: 501 Madison St. (Illinois 4) in Lebanon
Hours: 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sundays
Seating: About 100
Handicap accessible: Yes
Information: Call 537-8477
On the menu
House Club Sandwich -- Bacon, ham, turkey, American cheese, Swiss and mayo ($5.99 with cup of soup or $6.99 with soup and French fries)
Bacon Cheeseburger -- Topped with two slices of bacon and American cheese ($4.99 with cup of soup or $5.99 with soup and French fries)
Grilled Pork Chops -- Served with potato, vegetable, soup or salad and dinner rolls ($10.99)
Senior Meal -- Choice of 13 main dishes, ranging from fried chicken to ham steak with pineapple, spaghetti to turkey and dressing, served with potato, vegetable, soup or salad and ice cream ($6.29)
Bacon or sausage skillet -- Hash browns or American fries topped with cheese and three eggs, any style, with onion and green peppers ($5.99)
Veggie and cheese omelet -- Three eggs with green peppers, onions, tomatoes and mushrooms, served with hash browns or American fries and toast ($5.89)