East Falls: Trolley Car Cafe Celebrates its First Anniversary

Lisa Lepera serves ice cream to a customer at the Trolley Car Cafe.
Lisa Lepera served ice cream to a customer at the Trolley Car Cafe.

The Trolley Car Cafe is celebrating an anniversary on Wednesday, its first since moving into an old Fairmount Park pool house in East Falls. The cafe, founded as an offshoot of the Trolley Car Diner in Mt. Airy, prides itself on being an eco-friendly BYOB.

“We have solar power and grow many of the vegetables in the garden,” manager Kenneth Leger said. A state-of-the art cooking system that uses only electric and steam ensures that no fires can start, and water barrels collect water for use.

The building the cafe is in was formerly known as “The Bathey,” and the original function of the pre-1940s building is not lost in the eatery. A sign hanging on the wall displays the old hours of the pool house, while the outdoor patio is reminiscent of days when patrons would spend hours lounging around the pool.

Nestled between Ridge Avenue and the Kelly Drive, the cafe prides itself on serving food that is healthier than the usual cafe fare. “I would say it’s very different than other restaurants,” said Lisa Lepera, a waitress who has been with the diner since before it moved into it’s current location. “We don’t have a deep fryer like most restaurants.”

The cafe originally opened in June 2010, though it had its official grand opening a few months later. It is located at 3269 S. Ferry Drive in East Falls, serving breakfast through dinner.