Geno Vento Talks About Controversial Sign In Shop - KMSP-TV

Geno Vento Talks About Controversial Sign In Shop

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PHILADELPHIA -

Whether your favorite cheesesteak comes from "Geno's", "Pat's", or "Tony Luke's," there's no denying that Joey Vento was quite the character.

Joey ran Geno's Steaks for 45 years until his death in 2011.

But now, there's a new man running the joint. Meet Geno Vento, Joey's son and the man for which the steak shop is named. Geno took over the shop after his father passed away.

Joey Vento was a lightning rod for controversy after he put up a sign at his famous steak shop that read, "This is America. When ordering "Speak English."

"This is America, correct? Please speak English. If you don't speak English, how is it offensive? you cannot read the sign anyway," said Joey, years ago when FOX 29 talked to him.

Geno says his father was "old school," and he's trying a few new tricks when it comes to managing one of the biggest steak shops in town. But as for the infamous sign, he says it's staying up.

"I definitely know him on a different level. People can say negative things about anybody, anything about controversy. But we know what he does, he donates to a lot of charities, he gives back to the community. So if that is a racist, then he is a racist," says Geno.

Next Tuesday, in honor of Geno's 47 th anniversary, cheese steaks are only 50 cents, from noon, to two p.m.

The restaurant is also holding a raffle, and all the money raised will go towards cancer research.

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