DEAR SUN SPOTS: What happened to Niky’s restaurant on Lisbon Street? We received a gift certificate for Christmas, and we went on Jan. 5, and they were closed. Do you have any information on what has happened? — No Name via email

ANSWER: Sun Spots was unable to reach Niky directly, but has been told that the restaurant is closed and is unlikely to reopen any time soon.

If by chance your gift certificate was purchased through, you may be able to exchange it for a gift certificate at another restaurant at that website. (Sun Spots did not find a phone number on that website.)

Unfortunately, if it was purchased directly from the restaurant, you have little recourse.

You can go to small claims court, but that means laying out more money to chase that $100. And even if you win, you still have to collect from someone who may not have any money.

If the restaurant declares bankruptcy, you can get in line with other creditors.

Or lastly, you can hope Niky opens another restaurant and honors your gift certificate. 

Sun Spots realizes that none of these options are very appealing. The only suggestion she has is to eat at Maine-based restaurants to help keep them in business and to use gift certificates as soon as you get them. 

DEAR SUN SPOTS: What a great column! I enjoy it so much.

I have two questions: We received a gift certificate for Outback Steakhouse, and in the meantime they have closed in Portland. I have called the toll-free number on the back of the card to ask for a refund, but all I get is a recording. Could you help me?

Also, is there a store that sells sheets separately? I am in need of the fitted ones. — No Name, South Paris

ANSWER: The only phone number Sun Spots found for Outback is 877-670-4329. If you don’t get through, there is an option to leave your name, phone number and gift card number for a return call.

But Sun Spots would be very surprised if they will refund your money. You may want to look at “re-gifting” the card to someone who has an Outback nearby. The gift card is also good at all the Bloomin’ Brand company restaurants, which include Carrabba’s Italian Grill, Roy’s, Bonefish Grill and Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar.

As for single sheets, they are readily available at numerous locations online, but as your letter was handwritten, Sun Spots gathers you’d prefer a local store. 

The one option that quickly came to mind was Bed, Bath and Beyond. Sun Spots called, and they do indeed sell them. The store is in Auburn at 730 Center St., 753-4343.

Readers may know of other options.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: We have an older-style daybed, which we occasionally use for our small grandchildren. We have been looking to replace a foam rubber mattress measuring 30 by 74 inches.

We found one at the old Sharlaines in Auburn, but it was very pricey, close to $100.

We called Anthoine Rubber, but there is never an answer. Have they closed?

Do any of your readers know who could help us find a piece of foam for our bed?

Thanks for any help. — Rachel, Lewiston, 786-3052

ANSWER: Sun Spots is not surprised by that price. She bought a similar mattress in Waterville a decade ago and paid nearly that much. 

She did not have luck with Anthoine’s either. Perhaps readers will know that story or have suggestions.

If you buy used, be wary of bedbugs!

SUN SPOTS: There was an inquiry a couple of months ago as to whether or not a horse stable was once located near the present day vicinity of Tall Pines.

In the late 1960s I participated in a horseback riding program sponsored by Webster Elementary School in Sabattus for sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders at the Thurston Riding School, which was located at that site.

It was, I believe, family-owned, as Mrs. Thurston ran the program. If I remember correctly, the stables were just over the railroad tracks where the Irving Service station is now located. — Ron LaBerge, Sabattus, [email protected]

This column is for you, our readers. It is for your questions and comments. There are only two rules: You must write to the column and sign your name (we won’t use it if you ask us not to). Please include your phone number. Letters will not be returned or answered by mail, and telephone calls will not be accepted. Your letters will appear as quickly as space allows. Address them to Sun Spots, P.O. Box 4400, Lewiston, ME 04243-4400. Inquiries can also be emailed to [email protected]

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