Ron Shapiro – Moonlite Cafe at the Hoka Theater (1978-1996) | Southern Foodways Alliance arrow left envelope headphones search facebook instagram twitter flickr menu rss play circle itunes calendar

Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region. If you would like to contribute to SFA’s oral history collections, please send your ideas for oral history along with your CV or Resume and a portfolio of prior oral history work to

< Back to Oral History project: Restaurants of Oxford’s Past


Ron Shapiro, owner

Ron Shapiro made his way to Oxford in the late 1970s, and the town hasn’t been the same since. Soon after arriving, he and a few others opened an art house movie theater, The Hoka. Adding a cafe seemed a logical next step, and so began the Moonlite Cafe. With late-night munchies, as well as more sophisticated movie-themed fare, the Moonlite Cafe became a haunt for local characters and celebrities alike. On any given night you might find students or professors, artists or writers, bellied up to the counter for a fix of the cafe’s famous cheesecake or a bowl of vegetarian chili. Unfortunately, the curtain came down on The Hoka and its Moonlite Cafe in 1996, but Ron is still in Oxford, making plans for the next big idea to shake things up.

Date of interview:
2004-07-27 00:00

Amy Evans


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The Southern Foodways Alliance drives a more progressive future by leading conversations that challenge existing constructs, shape perspectives, and foster meaningful discussions. We reconsider the past with research, scrutiny, and documentation.


Alex Raij Txikito

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