Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Dairy Queen Vermilion Ad – March 31, 1965

Spring 2020 has been off to a crazy start, with all of the precautions being taken to control the Coronavirus. But hopefully things will begin to get back to normal by the beginning of summer.

One of those things to look forward to along with the warm weather is the opening of Romp's Dairy Dock on Liberty Avenue (U. S. Route 6).

As you can see in the above ad at the top of this post, back in 1965 the popular soft serve ice cream stand was part of the Dairy Queen system. The ad appeared in the Vermilion Photojournal on March 31, 1965 – 55 years ago today.

Romp’s has been a favorite topic on this blog since I moved to Vermilion.

I posted an interesting 1963 article about the history of Romp’s here, as well as a Grand Opening ad for the Dairy Queen from June 1964 here. Romps’s also made it into this article about the flooding that took place back in January 1959.

Anyway, whenever Romp’s Dairy Dock does open this year, it will be a pleasant sight indeed.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Cedar Point 100th Anniversary Article – March 1970

Despite the disruption of life as we know it by the Coronavirus, Cedar Point is still hoping to open in May for its big 150th Anniversary season. I’m hoping they’re right. (Here’s the story as covered in the Sandusky Register.)

Back in March 1970, Cedar Point was getting ready to open for its – what else? – 100th Anniversary season. That’s the subject of the article above, which appeared in the Journal on March 13th.

As part of the celebration that year, Cedar Point unveiled ten new amusement rides, including the original Wildcat, which was a pretty nifty little steel roller coaster. It made for a memorable ride because each car only accommodated four riders.

The original Wildcat
(Courtesy www.cpamericasrollercoast.com)
Click here to read about the two Cedar Point rides with the Wildcat name on the great www.cpamericasrollercoast.com website. The page includes some great vintage photos, such as the one above.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Tower Boulevard’s New Look

Back in early January (on this post), I wrote about the fact that Tower Boulevard was now towerless, since Ohio Edison had recently removed them.

To refresh your memory of the towers, here are a few photos (courtesy of Google Maps) showing the familiar views that the locals had grown accustomed to seeing all their lives. (After all, the towers had been there since the late 1920s or early 30s.)

Looking north on Leavitt Road, and approaching the Tower Boulevard intersection 
Looking east down Tower Boulevard from just off Leavitt Road
Looking west on Tower Boulevard from Oberlin Avenue
Well, a few weeks ago I was in Lorain on a sunny Saturday afternoon, and decided to check out the new monopoles that replaced the towers. Here are a few views.

The pole at the intersection of Tower and Leavitt
Looking east down Tower from just off Leavitt
Same view as above
Looking east at the intersection of Tower and Oberlin Avenue
I’m not sure I like the new monopoles. They have a funky look to them that belies their importance; sort of like an earring tree. Ah, but that’s progress.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Windjammer Apts. Ad – March 1970

Yesterday I posted an ad for Lakeside Ten Apartments from the pages of the Journal fifty years ago this month. Today’s post features an ad for one of its lakefront competitors.

About a mile and a half to the west of Lakeside Ten in Sheffield Lake are the Windjammer Apartments, located at 4141 Lake Road. Windjammer Apartments also took out an ad in that same Journal advertising section on March 1, 1970. It’s kinda classy with its woodcut illustration of – what else? – a windjammer.

I’ve always liked the location of Windjammer Apartments. They're right next to the library (perfect for a blogger), as well as a liquor store (possibly perfect for a blogger), and across the street from a shopping center. 
A few years ago when I was apartment-shopping, I had hoped to get in, but the symbolic ‘No Vacancy’ sign was lit up. 
Anyway, like The Perch on Lake, the Windjammer Apartments are still attractive and well-maintained. 
Unlike Lakeside Ten, however, the property still has its original name, which is always a nice thing.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Lakeside Ten Apartments Unveiled – March 1970

Fifty years ago, apartment living was being heavily promoted in the Lorain Journal as a carefree alternative to home ownership. A variety of articles and ads ran over the weekend of Feb. 28 - March 1, 1970.

The most heavily promoted property was the luxurious new Lakeside Ten Apartments in Sheffield Lake right on U. S. Route 6. The ad above ran in the paper on Saturday, Feb. 28th.

A day later, the special article below ran on Sunday.

(I did a "Then & Now” photo treatment of Lakeside Ten here. I also wrote about the groundbreaking of Lakeside Ten back here.)
It’s still amazing to me that Sheffield Lake gave up its lakefront city hall property to develop Lakeside Ten. It was quite forward-thinking and a glimpse of things to come.
Anyway, today the apartments are known as The Perch on Lake (sounds kinda tasty) and are still impressive to see.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

We did it before – we'll do it again!

For almost all of us, dealing with the Coronavirus is an unpleasant experience. Its disrupting our lives and causing much panic and uneasiness.

With God’s help (and a lot of hand washing), the tragic deaths will be minimized.

But eventually, the crisis will be over. Although life will never be quite the same, things will get back to normal. Sometime in the future, we’ll be looking back and remembering exactly how it affected us and our families. And wondering how we got through it.

If you’re old enough, you know what I mean. We’ve lived through a few of these things.

The best example, of course, was 9/11. 

I remember exactly what I was doing when I first heard that a plane had struck the World Trade Center. I was sitting at work, listening to the radio (WRMR 850, the Big Band station) when it was first announced via a very low-key interruption of the music.

At the time, I thought that it was just a Cessna or other small plane that knocked over a radio tower. When the second plane hit, we knew something big was going on. Turning on a TV at work in our customer lounge confirmed it and we finally realized just how big an event it was.

A few hours into the mayhem, just before we were all sent home, I thought I’d better call my parents. The funny thing was, they didn’t have their TV on and were blissfully unaware of what was going on. When I told them what was happening, they weren’t particularly upset – probably because as members of the Greatest Generation, they had lived through a variety of crises (the Depression, World War II, etc.) already.

A few years later, we had the big blackout of 2003. I was at work, about 15 minutes away from going home, when the lights went out and everything went dead. I remember driving down Clifton Boulevard in Cleveland, with all the traffic lights out, and the stores with their doors open so they could get some light into their buildings. The feeling at the time was very similar to 9/11 and we wondered if terrorists were involved. It was hot and uncomfortable too, to add to the uneasiness.

There were other memorable disasters local to Ohio, such as the July 4, 1969 storm, and the Blizzard of 1978. I’ll never forget those either.

The funniest national 'big event' was the Y2K Bug – the fear that all hell was going to break loose when the computer clocks (and our coffee makers, VCRs, etc.) switched over to the year 2000. Nobody knew what was going to happen.

Again, I know exactly where I was at when it all went down at midnight on New Year's Eve 1999: the Jackalope Restaurant in Lorain. 

And that’s what was so funny. Nothing happened. Except that my bill for the night's dinner and entertainment was much more than I expected, and I was briefly in danger of starting a new career as a dish washer.

Anyway, the good news is that we always get through these things. That's the American way. And we all laugh about it later.

I'm counting on it, and looking forward to it.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Ontario Ad – March 26, 1970

Since this blog began back in 2009, there’s been more than 2,800 individual posts. But only one of those posts has more than forty comments left by readers.

Can you guess which post continues to attract readers more than nine years after it first appeared?

No, it’s not one featuring Reddy Kilowatt or Old Dutch Beer; it’s a post I did back in February 2011 entitled, “Remember Ontario Dept. Store?

Apparently a lot of people still do, because the comments section for that post has become an online gathering place for former managers and employees of Ontario stores in other cities to correspond and reminisce. Their family members comment as well, and there’s even one from one of the founder’s children.

All of them have pleasant memories of a company that more than one of them believe could have given Walmart a run for its money.

So to keep the party going, here’s an Ontario ad with a ‘Fishing Headquarters” theme that ran in the Lorain Journal fifty years ago this month on March 26, 1970.
It’s fun examining the ad and checking out the various lures and other products, as well as the brand names such as Heddon®. And I like the ‘Huck Finn’ cartoon kid with his homemade fishing pole, and the cat waiting patiently for his share of the catch.
As I mentioned back on this post, my father enjoyed fishing. Unfortunately, he failed to lure my brothers and me to the hobby.
Maybe in retirement I’ll get myself a new Zebco and a loaf of Wonder Bread (for dough balls) and see if I can relive those Saturday afternoons in the 1960s.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Antlers Considered For Red Bull Inn – March 1970

Here’s yet another one of those “What Might Have Been” stories that seem to pop up here on the blog from time to time. They’re usually of little cosmic importance, but interesting nevertheless.

This one is from the pages of the March 7, 1970 edition of the Journal, and involves a restaurant chain that was interested in having Lorain’s Antlers Hotel as one of their locations.

The restaurant chain was called Red Bull of America, with their individual locations usually called Red Bull Inn. The chain was based out of Carnegie, Pennsylvania, which is part of the Pittsburgh Metro Area.

Here’s the article, written by Tom McPheeters, Staff Writer.

Although Lorain ultimately did not get a Red Bull Inn, the regional chain enjoyed a certain amount of success for many years. Columbus, Ohio was one of the locations.
Lewis Fleck was the Red Bull executive mentioned in the Journal article. At the time of his passing in 2004, his obituary provided a nice capsule history of the chain. It noted, "When Louis S. Fleck was looking for a different theme for a new neighborhood bar and restaurant 40 years ago, he didn't let his German heritage get in the way.
"Mr. Fleck decided to pattern his new establishment after an English pub and call it the Red Bull Inn.

From that first fledgling business in Carnegie in 1964, Mr. Fleck's Red Bull Inns grew to include, at their peak, more than 20 restaurants in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia before the chain dwindled to one because of financial problems.

"As the result of his working-class roots, Mr. Fleck opened many of his Red Bull Inns in mill towns like Ambridge, Charleroi and Johnstown, Dan Fleck said. Most were successful for more than 20 years, but the restaurants started to go south with the decline of the steel industry.

Perhaps because of its reputation as a mill town, Lorain was considered for a Red Bull Inn location.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Arby's Opens in Elyria – March 1970

It sure seems like the first part of 1970 was a fast-food lover's dream. It was only a few months into the new decade, and at least two national/regional restaurant chains were staking their claim in Lorain County.

I wrote about the Arthur Treacher's Fish & Chips outlet that opened in Lorain back here. Well, here's another fast food restaurant that debuted during that same time period: the Arby's on Griswold Road in Elyria near Midway Mall.

Above is the ad that ran in the Lorain Journal on March 13, 1970 announcing that the Elyria location was now open. A few months later, the store ran an ad in the Journal announcing the winners in its Grand Opening contest (which I wrote about here).

Arby's has been a semi-regular topic on this blog for quite some time. I wrote about the cartoon glasses that you used to be able to collect at Arby’s here, and the demolition of the Griswold Road restaurant here.

I'll probably never be able to quit thinking (and babbling) about how good the chain's roast beef sandwich used to be in the early days, when it was the real thing. I’ve said before how my family used to drive to North Olmsted to get it, before the one in Elyria opened.

There are some interesting websites that feature articles and information about Arby’s.

Click here to read about the Raffel Brothers (RB.. get it?) and how they created the Arby's chain. And this link will take you to the great RoadsideArchitecture.com website, which has a fascinating collection of photos of former Arby’s buildings as well as the original cowboy hat signs. (Did you know the original buildings were shaped like Conestoga wagons?)

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

National Taco Week – March 1970

Fifty years ago today, Lorain was just beginning to experience all of the excitement, unique culinary fare and colorful pageantry of National Taco Week.

National Taco Week?

I’ve never heard of it either, but in 1970 the celebration ran from March 18 to March 28 (which, curiously, is longer than a week).

Anyway, amigo, at least one local restaurant chain was part of the celebration then. Taco Kid ran the above ad in the March 20, 1970 edition of the Lorain Journal.

You might remember that I wrote about Taco Kid before. The chain was originally called Taco Boy and was started by the same gentleman who launched Olde English Fish ’n Chips. The name was later changed to Taco Kid (which I wrote about here).

I don’t think National Taco Week ever caught on. But apparently Cleveland liked the idea, and had been planning its own Cleveland Taco Week for April 6 - 12, 2020.

Hopefully the Coronavirus scare will have dissipated enough by then so Cleveland can have its celebration.

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

LK Restaurant Ad – March 3, 1970

Well, it was supposed to be Election Day today in Ohio, until it was postponed because of health concerns due to the Coronavirus. As a precinct election official in Lorain County, I got the phone call at 11:00 pm Monday night.

Here’s hoping that things are better virus-wise on June 2nd, which is the planned make-up date.

Anyway, in honor of the Election Day that wasn’t meant to be, here’s an ad for the LK Restaurant chain that ran in the Journal on March 3, 1970. The very simply-designed ad promotes a sandwich called “The LK President.”
Unfortunately, the ad doesn’t say what kind of sandwich it was. Was it a burger? The ad illustration (which is begging to be colored) makes it look like something breaded.
And why was it named “The President”? Was it because of its broad appeal and ability to be all things to all restaurant patrons?
At least the ad makes a nice play on words. Either that or it’s a typo.
The ad lists the two LK restaurants in the area at that time, on Leavitt Road in Amherst (which I wrote about here and in this multi-part series), as well as at the junction of Ohio State Route 10 and U.S. Route 20.

Monday, March 16, 2020

St. Patrick’s Day Grocery Ads – March 1970

Today’s grocery store circulars that come with your mail or newspaper are beautifully designed, and crammed with full-color photographs of the featured sale items. There’s very little left to the imagination as to what's being advertised (except that some of the photos are only slightly larger than a postage stamp).

Decades ago, however, most supermarkets ran black and white ads in the newspaper to advertise their sale items, usually on a specific day of the week. And the ads relied on illustrations and listed the products that were on sale.

Often the ads featured seasonal decorations, such as these ads with a St. Patrick’s Day theme. They both ran in the Lorain Journal in March 1970.

Here’s one for the well-remembered Pick-n-Pay, which ran on March 11, 1970. Although there’s some nice clip art of a leprechaun, the Clydesdale Horses are the main attraction since they were going to appear in the parade that year. (I’m assuming it was a Budweiser tie-in, although there’s not a mention in the ad of the King of Beers.)

On that same day, Fisher Fazio ran their own ad in the Journal, also featuring a leprechaun – smoking yet! Here’s the ad header.

Strangely enough, the big meat specials were ham and pork – hardly suitable for the day honoring the sons of Erin!

Anyway, here’s hoping you have a great St. Patrick’s Day tomorrow.

For more fun, you can revisit these previous St. Patrick’s Day posts, as well as this one about corned beef.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Elyria High Sports Cartoon – March 13, 1970

It’s been months since I posted any The Passing Scene cartoons from the usual 50-years-ago perspective. Gene Patrick took a break from his creation starting in the last half of 1969, and continuing right into 1970; I still haven’t encountered any new strips.

But I did find this great sports cartoon (below) from the pen of Bob Smith. It depicts Elyria mascot Petey the Pioneer (on the left) with guns a-blazin’, and the Elyria High basketball coach (note the tiny fedora), on the way to the Class AA basketball tournament in Toledo. It appeared in the Journal on March 13, 1970.

The cartoon is great. It’s bursting with energy and wonderful ink work, and is as fresh today as when it was drawn.

Of course, showing smoking guns in such a comic today would probably be verboten.

By the way, note that the Cavaliers were not listed in the NBA Standings box. They didn’t exist yet; the 1970-71 season would be the team’s first.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Sandy’s E. 42nd St. Article – March 16, 1970

Earlier this week, I posted a 1970 Journal article about Tudy’s Spot Drive-in that was part of a special advertising section that the paper used to feature.

Regular reader and commenter Todd, who worked at the Journal, pointed out that the section was called the “Business & Industry” pages. As Todd noted in his comment, "The advertiser would sign a separate advertising contract that was for 20 weeks that included a business card size ad every week and 4-5 stories/photos over the contract period. If I remember correctly, these pages ran on Mondays. 

"We had a fellow on our ad staff that would go out and interview the store owners and take the photos. 

"This section was very popular while I was employed there in the 80s and 90s; however, I'm not sure when it officially began or ended.

Anyway, the stories were very well-written and provide a nice snapshot of various local businesses during that time period.

And heres another one from that same March 1970 time frame. Its about Sandys and its chicken. This time, however, its the outlet out in South Lorain on E. 42nd Street off State Route 57. (Got to give it equal time, you know.)

Note that the article ends with, “Be Swift ’n Thrifty and eat at Sandy’s Southview Restaurant across from Southview High School.
Of course, fifty years later, Southview High School is gone. 
Thrifty savers, however, can bank their pennies at First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Lorain, which is located at Sandy’s old address on E. 42nd Street.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Arkansas Ave. House Demolition – March 11, 1970

The demolition of old buildings and structures has been a reoccurring topic on this blog for many years. I’ve written about demolitions that took place long ago, as well as many that are quite recent (no shortage of those).

I’ve featured historic houses (such as the Foote House, the Judge Henry Brown House, the Captain Aaron Root House) and not-so-well known houses (such as the Dembek farmhouse on Leavitt Road and the house at Kolbe and Jaeger, and some old farm houses on Colorado Avenue near Miller Road). Other structures include the City Bank Building in South Lorain, and buildings in Central Lorain that had to go to make way for senior housing.

There’s just too many demolitions to mention.

In recent years, the roll call of pulverized structures have included the original Lorain Yacht Club clubhouse, the old Oberlin Inn, a lakefront mansion in Avon Lake, Garwell’s Bait & Tackle, and even the Avon Lake water tower.

Too often the trend (in Lorain, at least) tends to be to tear down an old building that has been declared an eyesore, and then leave the lot vacant.

But apparently that idea is nothing new. Today’s post concerns the demolition of a house that was located at 112 1/2 Arkansas Avenue in Lorain. The article below appeared in the Journal fifty years ago today on March 11, 1970.

Despite the photo caption, I assumed the house wasn’t really 200 years old since it would pre-date the founding of the city by many decades.
So how old was it?
It’s hard to tell from the city directories. An address of 112 Arkansas Avenue was in the listings for many years before the 112 1/2 address joined it in the directory in 1950. I suspect they were both for the same house. 
Both addresses were vacant in the 1969 edition, and both disappeared in the 1970 book. Looking at the Historic Aerials website, only one house was torn down in that block during that time period – bolstering the argument that the home was originally just 112 Arkansas Avenue.
Nevertheless, the house next door – which you can catch a glimpse of in the photo – is still there on the street, at 116 Arkansas Avenue. In 1940, it was known as Pierce’s Convalescent Home, operated by Mrs. Pearl Pierce.
Anyway, today the location of the demolished home is largely empty, except for possibly a small addition to the neighboring commercial building that is currently for lease.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Passing Scene Surprise – March 7, 2020

Did you see it?

Forty-some years after it last appeared in the Journal, Gene Patrick’s Passing Scene comic strip made an appearance in the Morning Journal over the weekend.

The Saturday, March 7, 2020 edition included an “Another Viewpoint” feature written by Marcia Ballinger, President of Lorain County Community College (LCCC). The focus of the opinion piece was to encourage county residents to support Issue 17, which renews the original operating levy, along with an additional 0.5 mill.

About a third of the way into the article, it notes that at the time that it opened, "the Lorain Journal featured an editorial cartoon ... commemorating the gift for the public with the tag “From the people of Lorain County to future generations.”

The piece included the last panel from the Passing Scene comic strip of October 1, 1966 from my blog post of October 3, 2011.

Although it would have been nice if Gene's strip had been identified by name (as opposed to referring to it as an editorial cartoon), it was great to see his name and some of his artwork back in the Journal after so many years.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Tudy’s Spot Drive-in – March 9, 1970

Here’s another one of those types of features highlighting a restaurant or company that the Journal used to run on a special advertising spread. These pieces more or less masqueraded as a regular news article, but they were a great idea and fun to read. (The Morning Journal should consider reviving this particular gimmick.)

These features are nice in retrospect, because they usually say something about the owner of the business, and sometimes include a photo.

This one for the well-remembered Tudy’s Restaurant on Route 254, which ran in the Journal on March 9, 1970 – 50 years ago today – had both. Manager Art “Tudy" Diaz is mentioned halfway through the article.

Although the photo accompanying the article is a little dark, it shows the great neon sign design, (which unfortunately is becoming a lost art).

Anyway, I’ve mentioned Tudy’s before on this blog. This post from 2016 includes some photos of the building, a later sign, an advertisement and a photo of the owner, Mr. Diaz.

Friday, March 6, 2020

Nick Serbu's Tavern

Courtesy Dennis Lamont and Drew Penfield
In the years before French Creek Reservation was created, there wasn’t much out there on French Creek Road, except for farms and woods. But for a time beginning in the early 1940s, there was Nick Serbu’s Tavern.

And it was located right near the entrance to what would later be French Creek Reservation.
I had first heard about it back in 2011 from Drew Penfield, webmaster of Lake Shore Rail Maps, the internet home of the comprehensive history of the Lake Shore Electric Railway interurban line. Drew was researching a former Lake Shore Electric car (No. 178) that had been purchased by Nick Serbu of Lorain and used as a tavern.
Drew provided the photo shown at the top of this post showing LSE 178 at its new home. You can see “SERBU’S” on the roof of the ‘house' portion of the building. 
Drew knew the house had been located on French Creek Road, near Abbe Road; we just didn’t have an exact location – yet.
The vintage Lorain city directories provided some information about the business. From about 1942 until the mid-1940s, Nick Serbu and his wife Eufrasina operated the tavern. But in those days, the bar didn’t have a numerical address; indeed, French Creek Road wasn’t even listed in the directory; the tavern’s address was simply, “Lorain Road.”
It was several years later (in 2018) when I ran across the photo below in the Arcadia book about Lorain County Metro Parks.
The photo caption noted that, ”Some homes on acquired land are historically significant; some homes are not. Then there is this French Creek Reservation home. Simply called the Bogdom [sic] home, this house shows ingenuity and history. The rear of the home was actually a former interurban electric railcar.”
Now we knew that the house was on land acquired by the park district. Surprisingly, the photo caption did not make note of the tavern business.
The “Bogdom home” mentioned in the caption was actually the home of Mary Bogdan, the sister of Nick Serbu.
It remained for longtime blog contributor and researcher extraordinaire Dennis Thompson to tie up some loose ends with a visit to the Lorain County Records Center, as well as the Lorain County Auditor.
As Dennis noted, the 1930 Sheffield Township map did not include the Serbu name, but it did reveal a previous owner of the property: William A. Day. 
You can see the Lake Erie & Pittsburgh Railroad tracks indicated as crossing French Creek Road near what it today the entrance to the park. Yesterday’s blog post included a 1970 article that mentioned, “The Pine Tree site is in the Burrell Woods area of the park and will be reached from French Creek Road by an access road built along an old railroad spur.”
According to Dr. Charles "Eddie" Herdendorf of the Sheffield Village Historical Society, "The Lake Erie & Pittsburgh Railroad (LE&P) was formed in July 1903 to build a rail line from Lorain to Youngstown and eventually on to Pittsburgh. The 105-mile projected route ran in a direct line between Lorain and Youngstown, passing through Berea and Ravenna. It was not intended as a passenger route, its clear purpose was to form a direct link between lake industries and the coal reserves of the Mahoning and Ohio valleys. The section between Berea and Ravenna appears to have been completed early on, but the portion in Lorain County was not completed until 1917, in conjunction with the new Cromwell steel mill.
But getting back to Dennis Thompson’s research.
Dennis found this 1962 tax map showing both the Bogdan and Serbu names on the property. (See area outlined in red on large map and rotated close-up map below.)
Finally, Dennis obtained two aerial maps – from 1952 and 1962 – from the  U. S. Geological Survey website. He indicated in red where the former Serbu’s Tavern was located.
Lastly, here’s the same area today.
Thanks to Dennis for sharing his findings.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

French Creek Reservation Takes Shape – March 1970

Current Map (Courtesy Lorain County Metroparks)
The French Creek Reservation of the Lorain County Metropolitan Park District is one of my favorite parks.

Although I no longer live just a few minutes away from it, I make it a point to walk its wooded trails several times during the year, especially in the fall. The trails are just the right length if you don't have a lot of time to spare. Plus it's especially nice that the Pine Tree Picnic Area hooks up with the French Creek Nature and Arts Center on Colorado Avenue, if you feel like hiking a little farther.
But back in March 1970, French Creek Reservation was still being planned. The article below, which appeared in the Lorain Journal on March 1, 1970 provides some background information as well as a map.

The current layout of the main picnic area doesn't match the 1970 drawing exactly, but it's pretty close. Here are some aerial views, courtesy of Google Maps.

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Manners Fish 'N Chips Ad – March 1970

It seems like Lorain was crazy for fish & chips back in March 1970. Or at least the restaurant chains thought so.

We’ve already seen that Arthur Treacher’s had just opened in Lorain at that time. And the Olde English Fish ’N Chip Shoppe on Oberlin Avenue had introduced the English delicacy to the local market the previous year.

Well, now it seems that Manners was trying to mussel, I mean, muscle in the fish & chips racket as well. The above ad ran in the Journal on March 14, 1970.

Unfortunately, bland typography and an unappealing description of the dish (“crispy golden coating over flaky, white-meated blue water fish”) doesn’t exactly make me want to reach for a bottle of malt vinegar. The realistic fish and lure clip art doesn’t do it for me either.

I think Manners did a lot better job with this October 1966 ad for good ol’ Lake Erie perch (even though it features the same fish art). It looks fun and you don’t have to squint at any fine print.

But then again, a real perch-loving Lorainite probably would have headed over to the Slovak Home if it was Friday.
Manners has long been a favorite topic on this blog, including multi-part series on the Hoop/Manners Story, and The Restaurants of Richard W. Head.