Like so many I am disappointed that Russo’s is disappearing next month. I have shopped there since it was a vegetable stand and I presumed that its current version with 250 employees would be around for the rest of my life. Since this is not the case, I am wondering about the fate of all of its employees? Is Russo, like so many companies, providing outplacement services and some months of pay to assist the employees they are letting go land on their feet? If anyone knows, I would be interested to hear.
Phil Amatangelo worked at Russo’s market for nearly 50 years. The news that Russo’s market will be closing hit many people hard, and sparked plenty of memories. None more so, perhaps, than for a pair of daughters of a man who worked at the Watertown institution for just short of half a century. Anne Korte and Susan Amatangelo shared just a handful of memories of their father Phil Amatangelo with Watertown News. The Italian immigrant settled in the Boston area and his ties to the Russo family go way back, said Anne, who lives in Watertown.
Watertown will miss Russo’s. Tony has been a friend to many of us (and our dogs) and has worked to implement Watertown Local First, the single use plastic bag ban (in the days before the pandemic), and supported green issues in town. He also has taken it upon himself to organize cleanups of the public space beside his property to the river. We are sorry to see him sell, but I am most concerned about the land use between Russo’s and the river. Watertown has an important role to play in saving our long riverfront for access by the public.
Reports of culture’s demise in Watertown are greatly exaggerated. Is there a way for Watertown to avoid losing a gem like Russo’s, some have asked? (https://www.watertownmanews.com/2021/08/16/letter-is-there-a-way-for-watertown-to-avoid-losing-a-gem-like-russos/) The simple answer is no. There isn’t any one shop that can replace Russo’s in Watertown. That’s gone; like so many of gentrified Boston’s mainstays such as No Names, Durgin-Park, soon-to-be closed Kowloon, Circle Pizza, Jimmy’s Harborside, Anthony’s, and so many more.
I just saw on line that Russo’s is closing. This store has been a cherished family-owned retailer for more than 70 years, and we are deeply grateful to Tony Russo and his family and to their wonderful employees for their dedication and hard work – and for all their contributions to our community. We wish Tony and his family a happy, healthy, and well-deserved retirement. And we wish the Russo’s employees all the best as they face an uncertain future when Russo’s closes. Russo’s is a gem. What will happen to Watertown when it is gone??!!! I think that all the Russo’s customers — and this includes shoppers from all across metropolitan Boston, not only Watertown — view Russo’s as a unique resource for excellent reasonably-priced produce and fruit, a great bakery, and wonderful source of cheeses and prepared foods — plus plants and gardening supplies and Christmas trees. For many of us, Russo’s is a weekly destination for shopping and for seeing neighbors. Many say that Russo’s has a positive effect on Watertown property values. And I and many others fear that the loss of Russo’s would be a blow to the character of our city.
An institution in Watertown will be closing later this year when Russo’s market closes its doors after more than 100 years since it started business as a farm. The announcement was sent out by the store on Sunday, Aug. 15, on Facebook, and a statement was also posted on the Russo’s website. A Facebook post said that Tony Russo will be retiring later this year. He recalled working with his grandparents on the farm and his father and uncle at the wholesale warehouse.
Donohue’s Bar & Grill reopened after two weeks off due to the Coronavirus outbreak. A mainstay in the Watertown restaurant scene will be reopening after a couple weeks off during the Coronavirus outbreak, while a popular local market will be closing for in-store shopping. Over the weekend, J.D. Donohue announced that Donohue’s Bar & Grill will begin serving meals and alcohol for take out and deliver starting on Monday, April 6. “We closed after St. Patrick’s Day to give staff and kitchen staff and myself time to be quarantined,” Donohue said.
People who cannot go to a store, or do not want to in a social distancing effort during the Coronavirus outbreak, have some alternatives at two Watertown markets. At Russo’s, 560 Pleasant St., customers can order delivery through the Mercato website (click here), or they can order a Russo’s Box and pick it up in the market’s parking lot. There are two Box options, one for $50 and the larger size for $100. Each includes a variety of fruits and vegetables, bread, milk, eggs and more. See details by clicking here.