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Polock Johnny’s Closes After More Than 40 Years At Lexington Market

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Polock Johnny
Monique Griego 370x278 Monique Griego
Monique Griego joined the WJZ News Team in July 2011 as a General...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Another Baltimore staple closes its doors. Polock Johnny’s at the Lexington Market will serve its last customer Tuesday.

Monique Griego has more on what led to the shop shutting down.

After more than 40 years of dressing up, cutting up and dealing out delicious sausages, Polock Johnny’s will serve its last customer at the Lexington Market.

“I’m really sad because I’ve been here a long time,” said Diane Wilkins, owner.

Wilkins said her decision to shut down the iconic stand came down to one simple reason.

“We’re just not bringing in enough revenue at this point to have the doors remain open,” she said.

News of Johnny’s demise quickly spread throughout the market.

“It saddens me because it’s one of the few African-American businesses that’s still here in the market,” said Gregory Scruggs, a faithful customer and fellow shop owner.

He says the closing of Polock Johnny’s is part of a larger trend.

“A couple bakeries have closed within the past week and a half or so,” Scruggs said. “I think it’s a shame. That business was there for 30 years.”

Many business owners believe the drop in customers at the Lexington Market has gone from world famous to infamous.

“People have a stigma to Lexington Market about coming down. People have been scared away, ran away or whatever,” Wilkins said.

Wilkins also owns another Polock Johnny’s at Security Mall, which she plans to keep open.

Despite leaving Lexington Market, she still hopes something is done to help clean up the outside so that businesses can succeed on the inside.

“Hopefully they can revitalize this and the market can pick back up to where it used to be,” she said.

The remaining two Polock Johnny’s locations are both in Morrel Park.

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