Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Remember A&W Root Beer Stands?

1962 ad for the Vermilion A&W
Now that it's finally nice out, my thoughts automatically turn to the old drive-ins that my family used to go to back in the 1960's. One of them that I remember is the A&W Drive-in out in Vermilion on US Route 6 (back then it also included State Route 2 – thus it was 6 & 2).

It was a real treat to go there, and it's probably where I started my lifelong love of chili dogs. If I remember correctly, the Vermilion drive-in had those speakers that you spoke into to place your order. When it was ready, the carhop brought it out to you.

Here's a 1965 ad for the A&W Drive-ins. I don't remember the Vermilion carhops wearing stewardess uniforms, though!

1965 ad from the book Drive-in Deluxe by Michael Karl Witzel

Today the Vermilion A&W is long-gone; in its place at 4372 E. Liberty is a Wendy's restaurant.


Strangely enough, there was an A&W stand in Lorain on US 6 that I don't remember it at all. It was located at 2600 W. Erie Avenue and first appeared in the city directory in 1960. It was right where Madison Avenue intersects with W. Erie Avenue.

I probably don't remember it because my father always took W. 21st to get to West Erie if he was going west, bypassing that area entirely.  Most likely, my family went to the Vermilion one because it was a nice drive and something to do. If other families thought the same way, maybe it had something to do with the Lorain restaurant disappearing from the city directory in 1969.

Anyway, here's a May 29, 1965 newspaper ad for the Lorain A&W.


ge13031 said...

For those who are really desperate;

Jeremy R said...

That A&W location must have been right next to the Castle-on-the-Lake and immediately west of Madison Ave. 2600 would put it on the north side of Erie Ave. The Castle-on-the-Lake is 2532 W. Erie.