Decatur businessman Max Miller looks over some information in the atmosphere of his new restaurant in downtown Decatur. (DHI Media/Jim Langham)
Decatur businessman Max Miller looks over some information in the atmosphere of his new restaurant in downtown Decatur. (DHI Media/Jim Langham)

DECATUR – For much of his life, Decatur businessman Max Miller has had a dream of developing a downtown restaurant guided by a unique monster theme. That dream came true late this past summer with the opening his downtown restaurant, “Famous Monster Pizza.”

The eatery features a large supply of monster collectibles that he has collected since he was a youngster. To top it off, there is a large screen where old monster movies are played for customers to enjoy while they consume the famous, thick-crusted, monster pizza.

Other featured items include displays of old movie posters, record albums, famous monster items and toys with the monster theme such as Dracula. The special Halloween items currently on display include rare collections that have been in the making for half a century.

In addition to the monster pizza, the restaurant also serves such items as grinders, sausage rolls, salads and large variety of drinks.

Each week the restaurant carries some type of a monster theme. This week’s customers are greeted by a ghost theme. While the restaurant’s display is especially appropriate for the Halloween season, it is actually a year-round display of monster posters, toys and things related to the restaurant’s name.

For Miller, the most treasured part about the business is that it encompasses total family involvement.

“My wife is here and our children are involved one way or another,” said Miller. “It’s been crazy; we’ve been really busy since Aug. 1.”

Miller, who has been the owner of Ritter’s Flowers and Gifts on Second Street in Decatur for many years, also serves on the board of the Main Street Committee, bent on downtown development. In addition, he is also president of the board of the Adams County Historical Society.

As a writer, he has authored several books including “Tales of the Graveyard Shift.”

“I love it, the kids all love it,” said Miller. “We’ve been busy, we need room to grow. There is often a one hour wait on Friday and Saturday evening. Everybody loves pizza.”

Miller said that Facebook has been one of the biggest promoters of the new establishment. He noted many who visit the eatery post their own reviews of the good time that they’ve had there.

As a result, said Miller, customers often drive to Decatur from Bloomington, Indiana, the Indianapolis area, Fort Wayne and the Napoleon, Defiance and Van Wert areas of Ohio.

“We are working hard these days to rejuvenate downtown Decatur. This is one of our efforts to do so,” said Miller.

During the Halloween season, Miller schedules wagon rides around town on Friday and Saturday evening while he tells ghost stories to the riders. But don’t think of going anytime too soon, it is already totally booked for the rest of this season.