UNION, N.J. (PIX11) – A longtime staple was left shattered after a driver crashed into Van Gogh’s Ear Cafe in downtown Union, New Jersey.

“[I] came running over here and it was scary,” said cafe co-owner Sarah Perara.     

It was around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday when the vehicle left Stuyvesant Avenue, hit a parked car, then crashed into the cafe, police said. The owner was not impaired or distracted, according to police.

The cafe was closed at the time, and no one was injured. However, for Perara, who bought the business in 2009, the accident hurts her heart.

“Just the other day I was filling out some paperwork and I realized how long we were closed during the pandemic and how scary it was then and how good it is that we’re back on our feet again for a little bit here,” said Perara. “Then we had this happen this morning.”

Jackie, a nearby resident and one of the cafe’s longtime regulars, had to see the damage for herself.

“It’s such a homey place,” said Jackie. “You can come for music. It’s very family-friendly. My kids come here and my partner and I come here a lot, so it’s a really fun place to come to. I’m sad to see this happen to it.”

The owners don’t know how long the cafe will be out of commission, but in the meantime, they say customers can support them by visiting the bakery they own right next door, Jammed Up Bakery.

“They can go right there and buy cookies. We ship cookies nationwide,” said Perara, “so you can send someone some cookies to help take care of us a little bit while we’re closed here.”

Police said there was no structural damage to the business, so there’s hope Van Gogh can see more starry nights soon.

“We’re going to clean up and we’re going to reopen as soon as we can,” said Perara.