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Piece of Mon Desir is a Point of pride

A beloved piece from a local dinner house that burned down in 2010 has settled into a new home in downtown Central Point.

An iron gazebo, the sole remaining piece of property from the old Mon Desir restaurant, was lifted with a crane onto the patio of The Point Pub and Grill at 311 E. Pine St. last week.

Tyler Hoevet, co-owner of The Point, said he was excited to have the gazebo at his restaurant.

The Point, located in the historic Rostel building, was an ideal fit for a piece of local history, he said.

The Mon Desir was a favorite for generations of local residents celebrating birthdays, proms, weddings and other special occasions. The circular gazebo was salvaged from the Hamrick Road site and cleaned and stored at the city Public Works yard for the past eight years.

Central Point resident Debbie Saxbury, with help from members of the city Parks Commission, facilitated removal of the gazebo a few months after the fire and had been trying to find a new home for it.

When Saxbury approached owners of The Point, Hoevet said, it was a no-brainer.

“Debbie asked if we were even interested, and right away we were like, ‘Yep, let’s do it!’” said Hoevet.

“We feel pretty fortunate having this on our patio and to know there are so many memories attached of special dinners and weddings and fine dining. We’re really, really excited the community gets to see it again.”

Saxbury said she was elated to know the gazebo was again in a place where people could enjoy a meal underneath it and reminisce about the venerable Mon Desir, which was built in 1910 by orchardist and landowner Conro Fiero for his bride, actress Grace Andrews. The gazebo was created in the 1980s by Bill Evanston, a longtime patron of the Mon Desir and friend to one-time owner Betty Walters.

“I had my wedding reception at the Mon Desir and my 18th birthday,” Saxbury said. “There are just so many memories with family and friends. It was a very special place.”

Public Works Director Matt Samitore said city officials were happy to see the landmark preserved in a place it can be enjoyed. “The city is very happy to donate the gazebo to The Point restaurant, so it can be safely displayed and used by the public.”

Hoevet said he has been researching menu ideas from the Mon Desir. Locals have told stories of pear slices on dinner plates, and a popular salad dressing.

“We’re still researching some food options. We’ll have a big event and unveiling of the gazebo sometime in the spring,” Hoevet said.

“The city gave us money to roof it and to get a historical plaque. We’re really excited to give back a piece of Central Point history to the community. So many people have already come in and told me about having birthdays, anniversaries and even getting married under it. It’s a perfect piece for our patio, and we will honor the history behind it.”

Anyone with stories or old photos of the Mon Desir or the gazebo is asked to email Saxbury at dlsaxbury@gmail.com.

Reach freelance writer Buffy Pollock at buffyp76@yahoo.com.

Andy Atkinson / Mail Tribune{ } Tyler Hoevet sits in the famous gazebo that survived the fire at Mon Desire restaurant and is now located on the back patio at The Point in downtown Central Point.