CHARLESTON (JG-TC) -- Jerry’s Pizza and Pub is closing at the end of the weekend or so, depending on supplies.

Jerry’s is expected to remain open today, but Saturday is “up in the air” depending on how much product the business still has.

Larry Keck, 51, business owner, said he would be retiring from the pizza game with growing competition from new pizza restaurants in the area. He mentioned Eastern Illinois University’s dwindling population has played a huge role in making it more challenging each year to survive.

Keck has owned the pizza place and pub downstairs for 19 years, working at the pizza place for years beforehand. The pizza place was started in 1978.

Keck said he was not sure what would be done for the property in the restaurant’s absence, but for him, it will be the end.

“It is a possibility under someone else and that may be in the works,” he said in a Facebook post. “But for me, this love affair is over after 33 years and 3 months.”

Keck will be moving on, managing the Veterans of Foreign Wars Charleston Post 1592.

“We gave it a great run,” he said. “It was a blast.”

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Jarad Jarmon is a reporter for the JG-TC. He covers the city of Charleston, Eastern Illinois University, Mattoon schools and the Regional Office of Education.

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