Johnie's Broiler/Harvey's Broiler/Bob's Big Boy Broiler

ARCHITECTURE AND PRESERVATION NEWS for the Los Angeles Conservancy Modern Committee (ModCom) and other Mid Century Modern, Googie, International, Art Deco, 20th Century design

Moderators: I_LUV_POWER!!!!, Joe, Adriene, moderns-r-us, Tony, Futura Girl, sean, Josh Geidel, nichols, Java

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Postby nichols » Wed Feb 21, 2007 11:29 am

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Postby Synthetrix » Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:51 pm

Great! The wife and I will see you all there.
Synthetrix Photos of the Forgotten
http://photosoftheforgotten.synthetrix.com/

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Postby nichols » Wed Feb 21, 2007 8:58 pm

MEET AT BOB'S

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Cruise and places to eat in Downey

Postby retrocool » Thu Feb 22, 2007 4:42 pm

Be there or be square. It should be a fun day everybody. Hope to see you all there!

Places to eat in Downey

Oldest original Mc Donalds Florence Ave at Lakewood Blvd.

Nordic Fox Third St. at Paramount Blvd.

Stox 9518 Imperial Hwy.

Norm's Firestone Blvd. at Paramount Blvd.

Frisco's Carhop Drive-In
Located On 12050 Woodruff Ave.
Between Firestone Blvd. & Imperial Highway.

Have fun!
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Council Meeting tonight!

Postby retrocool » Tue Feb 27, 2007 3:08 pm

Hi everyone,

The Downey City Council will be voting tonight (Feb 27) on the extension of the moritorium that has been placed on the Harvey's Broiler property. This last Sunday's Ghost Cruise was a huge success, lets keep the momentum going, and let the city council know we will not give up on Harvey's Broiler. Let them know justice must be served and our history must be preserved and rebuilt. The meeting will start at 7:30 pm at the Downey City Hall located at 11111 Brookshire Avenue | Downey, CA 90241 | (562) 904-7246
If you can't make the meeting please email your support to the council.

Council
abayer@downeyca.org
dgafin@downeyca.org
kcartozi@downeyca.org
rtrejo@downeyca.org
mguerra@downeyca.org

City Clerk
kmidstok@downeyca.org

If you would like to write a letter to the local paper please email your letter to the Editor of the Downey Patriot
downeypatriot@yahoo.com

Thanks everyone!
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Postby Shifty » Wed Feb 28, 2007 11:25 am

Here are some pics. I was sad, however, that we couldn't line the cars along firestone, as I feel the message would've been more dramatic that way, atleast to the passers by. The strong showing was great to see, and I hope the political aspect of this works out as well as the cruise did.

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cars lined the entire block behind johnie's and went into the neighborhood as well..

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From earlier in the cruise..

"The Hat" at Valley/Garfield

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"Astro's" in Silverlake

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Killinghistory.com

Postby retrocool » Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:08 pm

Hi everyone,

You can check out the trailer for the new Harvey's/Johnie's Broiler documentary at www.killinghistory.com. It is really cool! Also there are photo galleries of the Harvey's Ghost Cruise. Check it out.

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Postby deanna b » Tue Mar 06, 2007 10:08 pm

I've long been curious about that old yellow Streamline drive-in seen in the background of the photo of the cruise at the original The Hat. Is that an old Wayne McAllister-designed Simon's, or a knock-off?


---------------------------------------
Shifty wrote:From earlier in the cruise..

"The Hat" at Valley/Garfield

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y158/90firebird/IMG_1043.jpg

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Postby Adriene » Thu Mar 15, 2007 2:02 pm

CHARGES HAVE BEEN FILED
See today's CBS news broadcast:

http://cbs2.com/video/?id=31556@kcbs.dayport.com

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Postby Adriene » Thu Mar 15, 2007 2:06 pm

Charges filed in razing of Johnie's
Northridge resident charged with partial destruction of landmark restaurant.
By Samantha Gonzaga, Staff writer
Long Beach Press Telegram

http://www.presstelegram.com/search/ci_5439296

Article Launched:

DOWNEY - Police on Wednesday released the findings of the investigation into the illegal bulldozing on the former Johnie's Broiler site.
Five misdemeanor criminal charges were filed against Northridge resident Ardas Yanik, all stemming from the Jan. 7 razing of the 90,000-square-foot parcel of land on 447 Firestone Blvd., said city prosecutor James Eckart.

Johnie's Broiler - originally called Harvey's Broiler by founder Harvey Ortner - was a Googie-style diner considered a hot spot for car clubs in the 1960s. In 1965, the property was sold to current owner Christos Smyrniotis, who gave it its present name.

Yanik is due for arraignment at the Los Angeles County Superior Court in Downey on April 4. Each of the five counts carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail, up to $1,000 in fines and court-imposed penalty assessments.

A call for comment to a Northridge address listed as Yanik's home was not returned Wednesday night.

According to Eckart, Yanik had entered into a private leasing agreement with Smyrniotis and was subletting the property to Car Outlet Inc., a used-car dealership that began operating in 2002.

As for Smyrniotis, "he has indicated he was unaware of" the plans to bulldoze, Eckart said.

The criminal charges Yanik faces all stem from the demolition and include four for public safety and nuisance, said Downey Police Capt. Jim McCulloch.

Yanik had been a person of interest since the beginning of the investigation, he continued.

Yanik didn't file the permit for demolition, and police records and witness accounts said that the demolition had been a dangerous one - gas and utilities were left on. Car Outlet, Inc.'s cars had been moved off the lot.

City records showed that Yanik in November filed a preliminary application to the Planning Department. It was rejected after it was deemed "incomplete" by city staff because of missing documents such as traffic and environmental impact reports.

Yanik had requested development of the lot into a commercial center, said Downey City Planner John Godlewski.

The City Council on Feb. 26 voted to extend until the end of the year a moratorium on development of the property to give city staff additional time to research the possibility of a historical preservation ordinance.

Samantha Gonzaga can be reached at samantha.gonzaga@presstelegram.com or (562) 499-1284.

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Ghost Cruise for the Broiler

Postby Cyclone Kevin » Thu Mar 15, 2007 5:20 pm

deanna b wrote:I've long been curious about that old yellow Streamline drive-in seen in the background of the photo of the cruise at the original The Hat. Is that an old Wayne McAllister-designed Simon's, or a knock-off?
Answer:

Deanna B,
Funny that you should ask this question, As our Fave Mod-Gal Adriene and I pulled the permits on that very same yellow building yesterday 3/14. This address @ 25 W Valley Bl Had been changed from 11-15 to 25 as per request on Jan.15,1958
Now, I took up a fair amount of Adriene's valuable time in attempting to figure out what it's orgin was. I do not feel that I was completely successful in my quest, but I did my best.

The 1st usage permit @ 11-15 W Valley Bl. is for Peerless Laundry Services Ltd.
Building to be used for: Laundry Call Station.
Contractor:Miller & Miller @ WHitney 4811 4853 Washington Bl. LA. CALIF.
Architect:Harry L. Pierce
Type of Building: Reinforced Concrete
Lot size:100.02'x115'
Building area: 3500 sq ft.
No of stories: 1

Valuation of completed work: $14,000.00
Date:9/14/36.

Adriene John & I really looked this building over. It definitely resembles a drive in built in the 30's. The city had no further info on it and it appears that the laundry was it very 1st tenant.

It's life included being a Foriegn Car dealership (New Cars), a used car dealeship=Miano Motors,Carpet sales Water bed sales,Stereo strore,Finally a restaurant! The Chowder House. It has been a restaurant with many different names/owners over the past 30yrs-mostly Asian cuisine.

I grew up in this area and have seen many changes in this area. I was hoping that this was a Carpenters or something, especially since Carpenters sister Drive-In Henry's was one block over. I felt that they might have out grew it as a Carpenters & openned a replacement under the Henry's moniker.

Not so though :(
I am still looking for the Alhambra Clock Broiler location as well as pictures of 2EE's which ended up utilizing the car canopy that was originally from Carpenters long demolished Arcadia location directly accross the street from Santa Anita.
2EE's Alhambra location as a drive-in was demo'd late 1976 (attempted to pull those as well,only found the new 1977 constuction sit down restaurant only along with the In-N-Out's buildings permits).
---------------------------------------
Shifty wrote:From earlier in the cruise..

"The Hat" at Valley/Garfield

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y158/90firebird/IMG_1043.jpg
All Roads Lead to The Broiler!

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Postby nichols » Tue Mar 20, 2007 11:26 am

DOWNEY PATRIOT

Charges filed against Johnie’s Broiler tenant
By Eric Pierce
DOWNEY--Prosecutors have filed misdemeanor criminal charges against the tenant of the Johnie’s Broiler property for nearly demolishing the former restaurant without building and safety permits.

Four other public safety and nuisance charges were also filed, according to a statement released by the Downey Police Department. Each of the five charges carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a $1000 fine, plus any court-imposed fines, if any.

Arraignment for Ardas Yanik, the lessee of the property, has been scheduled for April 4 at the Downey Courthouse.

The charges come after a three-month investigation by Downey Police, who worked in conjunction with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Cal OSHA and the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD).

Johnie’s Broiler was partially razed on the afternoon of Jan. 7. City officials said no demolition permits were ever pulled and a 10-month moratorium prohibiting development of the property was instituted by the city council two weeks ago.

Yanik was leasing the property from Cristos Smyrniotis, a retired businessman who owns other property in Downey. No charges were filed against Smyrniotis, who told the Patriot the demolition was done without his knowledge or consent...

http://www.thedowneypatriot.net/articles/articles01.php

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Postby Chrisgreen » Mon Apr 09, 2007 9:40 pm

I know the coffee shop was used in a lot of movies, but I just stumbled across it in this Madonna video, of all places!

Look for it around 1:44 into the video if you don't want to watch it all.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=zbm4li86bBs

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Postby nichols » Tue Apr 10, 2007 11:15 am

Downey Patriot

Johnie's tenant files for court extension
DOWNEY--Ardas Yankik, the man charged with illegally demolishing what used to be Johnie's Broiler, filed for a continuance Wednesday and is now scheduled to appear in Downey Superior Court April 18....


http://www.thedowneypatriot.net/articles/articles03.php

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Postby nichols » Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:53 am

THE DISTRICT

CHRISTOS ALMIGHTY
April 20th, 2007
The powerful truth and painful vision of the artist’s Johnie’s Broiler installation
By Steve Lowery
One of the great injustices in the art world—check that, the world—is taking place in Downey. It’s there that one of the most successful examples of conceptual art is being spat upon and scoffed at by the Philistines among whom we are all forced to live—and by we I mean me and by Philistines I mean you. Philistine.
I’m speaking, of course, of Christo’s altogether awe-inspiring installation near the intersection of Firestone and Old River School Road in Downey—what you, mouth breather, may know as the former site of Johnie’s Broiler. There, for anyone to see—no entrance or subscription fee—is art that inspires and informs. Johnie’s Broiler, a popular eatery and prime example of Googie architecture, now lies in ruins: a demolished trash heap created by a bulldozer. Out of this wreckage rises the single figure, Fat Boy, brandishing a hamburger...

http://thedistrictweekly.com/dwweb/?p=93

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Postby tallrick » Mon Apr 30, 2007 8:00 pm

If this was located in the rural midwest instead of California it would still be in business and standing.
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Postby Cyclone Kevin » Tue May 01, 2007 2:38 am

:D Adriene, Analisa,John and a fellow HAMBer & I are working on a Coast to Coast cruise to The Broiler for late summer.
We have a short while to get all of this together. This one is gonna cost some money, but will also generate some much needed funds for the resurection of The Broiler.

We are looking to have T-shirts & stickers available for sale as well as having plaques for the participants. If anybody wants to help,feel free to let anyone of us know. Believe me, we will need all of the help that we can get.
Thanx,
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preservation in Downey

Postby retrocool » Tue May 01, 2007 12:56 pm

Hi everyone,

I was talking with one of the city planners the other day and I was told that the preservation ordinance is being held up in staff. This is not a good sign. It would be great if you all could call or email the city to get the ball rollin again. Maybe they think we will forget Harvey's.

Council
abayer@downeyca.org
dgafin@downeyca.org
kcartozi@downeyca.org
rtrejo@downeyca.org
mguerra@downeyca.org

City Clerk
kmidstok@downeyca.org

If you would like to write a letter to the local paper please email your letter to the Editor of the Downey Patriot
downeypatriot@yahoo.com


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Postby tallrick » Tue May 01, 2007 1:58 pm

I hope that you will like your new strip shopping center. We all know that this "Harvey's Broiler" is never going to be rebuilt. High property values will see to that. The owner was too dumb to realize what a good thing he had. I bet that place could have made a small fortune restored and serving the nostalgic public. Now it's just losing money till the shopping center is built. This is another example why I hate California and Florida. In a city with affordable real estate someone could have come forward and bought the place years ago for like 200,000 or less and it would still be there. It's depressing to see how many places have been demolished by Californicators.
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Postby moderns-r-us » Mon Jul 30, 2007 12:59 pm

What is happening with this? Was anyone charged?
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Postby Lynxwiler » Mon Jul 30, 2007 3:00 pm

moderns-r-us wrote:What is happening with this? Was anyone charged?


nichols wrote:DOWNEY PATRIOT

Charges filed against Johnie’s Broiler tenant
By Eric Pierce
DOWNEY--Prosecutors have filed misdemeanor criminal charges against the tenant of the Johnie’s Broiler property for nearly demolishing the former restaurant without building and safety permits.

Four other public safety and nuisance charges were also filed, according to a statement released by the Downey Police Department. Each of the five charges carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a $1000 fine, plus any court-imposed fines, if any.

Arraignment for Ardas Yanik, the lessee of the property, has been scheduled for April 4 at the Downey Courthouse.

The charges come after a three-month investigation by Downey Police, who worked in conjunction with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Cal OSHA and the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD).

Johnie’s Broiler was partially razed on the afternoon of Jan. 7. City officials said no demolition permits were ever pulled and a 10-month moratorium prohibiting development of the property was instituted by the city council two weeks ago.

Yanik was leasing the property from Cristos Smyrniotis, a retired businessman who owns other property in Downey. No charges were filed against Smyrniotis, who told the Patriot the demolition was done without his knowledge or consent...

http://www.thedowneypatriot.net/articles/articles01.php


I wonder if tallrick is right and if Downey's much-maligned coffee shop will ever be rebuilt. I hate to be a pessimist though and will continue to think happy thoughts for the rebirth of Harvey's. I wish, I wish.

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Postby Cyclone Kevin » Mon Jul 30, 2007 6:10 pm

Lynxwiler wrote:
moderns-r-us wrote:What is happening with this? Was anyone charged?


nichols wrote:DOWNEY PATRIOT

Charges filed against Johnie’s Broiler tenant
By Eric Pierce
DOWNEY--Prosecutors have filed misdemeanor criminal charges against the tenant of the Johnie’s Broiler property for nearly demolishing the former restaurant without building and safety permits.

Four other public safety and nuisance charges were also filed, according to a statement released by the Downey Police Department. Each of the five charges carries a maximum sentence of six months in jail and a $1000 fine, plus any court-imposed fines, if any.

Arraignment for Ardas Yanik, the lessee of the property, has been scheduled for April 4 at the Downey Courthouse.

The charges come after a three-month investigation by Downey Police, who worked in conjunction with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, Cal OSHA and the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD).

Johnie’s Broiler was partially razed on the afternoon of Jan. 7. City officials said no demolition permits were ever pulled and a 10-month moratorium prohibiting development of the property was instituted by the city council two weeks ago.

Yanik was leasing the property from Cristos Smyrniotis, a retired businessman who owns other property in Downey. No charges were filed against Smyrniotis, who told the Patriot the demolition was done without his knowledge or consent...

http://www.thedowneypatriot.net/articles/articles01.php


I wonder if tallrick is right and if Downey's much-maligned coffee shop will ever be rebuilt. I hate to be a pessimist though and will continue to think happy thoughts for the rebirth of Harvey's. I wish, I wish.



Well here is the latest as of 18th of July @ Downey Superior Court.
Again court was continued to Aug 29 @ 8:30 am.
What Adriene & I received in an email from one of the court officers was that the scheduled time for the 7/18 hearing date was to be @ 1:30pm,

I arrived there @ 12:30pm and thought that I'd be early (for once in my life=lol!) So i get there and read te docket and find (L)Ardas Yanik's name @ the top of the list which means it was @ 8:30am session (actually heard @ 11:15am). I was like WTH? Got on the phone to Adriene who was on her way and gave her the heads up. I went into the clerks office and grabbed the synopsis of what has transpired.

From that report we found that after several attempts to get the perp in court, his attorney finally did that day, We were not happy! Adriene put a call into the prosecutors office and we put him on speaker phone and he let us know that "sometimes these things happen and that court works like that".

Again we were amazed that this case is dragging on like this with no resolve as of yet, A unlawful detainer has been filed by Christos Smyrniotis against (L)Ardas Yanik aka Destroyer of the Broiler!. (don't know the outcome of that yet?)

So this place still needs to be cleaned up.That too is still up in the air-City is awaiting contractor of choice by owner/lesse. We are having our Harvey's Holy Ghost Cruise in Oct, Date will be locked down soon. We still need help with this so if there are willing participants in the volunteer dept, please contact us @. www.cyclonequickie@aol.com.

We will see what will happen on Aug 29th @ 8:30am. You are more than welcome to come & show some support as well as well as continue letting the city council know that we are still watching as well as waiting for a complete rebuild. We are also seeking a very willing benefactor-an ideas anyone?????
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Postby Adriene » Tue Jul 31, 2007 12:48 pm

WE ALSO CALLED THE DOWNEY PATRIOT FROM THE COURTHOUSE THAT DAY AND EXPLAINED WHAT HAPPENED.
EDITOR ERIC PIERCE SUBSEQUENTLY FOLLOWED UP ON THE STORY:

JOHNIE'S BROILER CASE TRUDGING THROUGH COURT

Downey Patriot, July 20, 2007 – Ardas Yanik, the man police say illegally tore down Johnie’s Broiler earlier this year, has yet to stand trial as a series of continuances and no-shows have repeatedly pushed back his trial date.

A rundown of the case as it has transpired appears below:

Yanik is arraigned in Downey Municipal Court April 4 and charged with five counts, including illegal construction work, illegal dumping, illegal electrical equipment, plumbing with no permits and failure to maintain a property.

Yanik pleads not guilty to all counts, which are misdemeanor offenses and carry possible fines and jail time as punishment.

The arraignment is continued to April 18 to give Yanik time to hire a lawyer. Come April 18, Yanik still doesn’t have a lawyer and the matter is pushed to May 8.

Yanik does not appear in court May 8 but is represented by his counsel, W. Ronald Seabold. Arraignment is now considered complete and the next court date is scheduled for June 13, a pretrial hearing.

Neither Yanik nor Seabold attend the pretrial hearing, prompting Judge Dale Pomerantz to issue a bench warrant on Yanik, who has been free on his own recognizance.

Yanik appears in court a week later, June 20, and the bench warrant is recalled. A pretrial hearing is again set for July 3.

On July 3, Seabold requests more time, and the pretrial hearing is rescheduled for July 18, this past Wednesday.

Both Yanik and his attorney appear in court Wednesday, and file a continuance.

The pretrial hearing is now scheduled for Aug. 29 at 8:30 a.m. at the Downey courthouse.

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Postby csherman » Fri Aug 31, 2007 7:31 am

Any updates?

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Postby Cyclone Kevin » Fri Aug 31, 2007 8:22 am

ccjkinney wrote:Any updates?


Here is the skinny with these guys,
They are extremely sneaky. Adriene,Patricia & I spent another "leisurely" day @ court again waiting for 'Lard Ass Yanik's" attorney to show up. Pat & I arrived there @ the prescribed time=8:30 am. The lawyer decided to finally show @ noon.

Adriene,Pat & I decided to inquire as to what will happen now?
According to D.A. James Eckhart, The dealing stages are over, All they did was attempt to delay the inevitable. Yanik was requested by his attorney to appear, but did not-no plea bargin was cut, now trial will begin on Oct 9 @ 8:30 am @ division 3 which should not be a lengthy process.

I wish that more people would attend so that the city would see that there is a movement behind the rebuild and saving of the broiler. We also have t-shirts available for sale with all proceeds going towards toward the Broiler.

We also have the upcoming Harvey's Holy Ghost Cruiise
on Oct 14th, please email Adriene or I for info.
All Roads Lead to The Broiler!

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Holy Ghost Cruise

Postby retrocool » Thu Sep 13, 2007 6:47 pm

Hey Kevin can you post a flyer for the Holy Ghost Cruise on here so we can print them as we need?

Cheers!
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Postby nichols » Wed Sep 19, 2007 11:41 am

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Postby nichols » Wed Sep 19, 2007 11:42 am


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Postby nichols » Fri Oct 05, 2007 10:20 am

LOS ANGELES TIMES

Minnie Ortner, who with her husband, Harvey, founded Harvey's Broiler, the landmark 1950s Downey drive-in restaurant and coffee shop that became a Southern California car-culture magnet and later was renamed Johnie's Broiler, has died. She was 97.

Ortner died of complications of pneumonia Sept. 25 at her home in Hacienda Heights, said her nephew, Tom Carter.

Image
She was like everyone's aunt and grandmother. She had lots of regulars that came there almost every day...
— Tom Carter, nephew
When Harvey and Minnie Ortner purchased a poultry farm at the corner of Firestone Boulevard and Old River School Road in Downey in the 1950s, they had no intention of raising chickens.

"They bought the chicken farm because Harvey foresaw that it would be the best location for a restaurant you can imagine," Carter said. "Firestone Boulevard takes a very significant, sharp turn there at that location.

"Harvey envisioned 'Harvey's Broiler' in red script that would be visible for a mile in either direction at night, and it was. It looked as though the road dead-ended right at the restaurant because it was such a sharp turn there: It looked like the only thing you could do is drive in."

And drive in they did, reportedly as many as 5,000 cars each weekend night during the early 1960s heyday of the restaurant, which opened in 1958...

http://www.latimes.com/news/obituaries/ ... &cset=true

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Los Angeles Times

Postby retrocool » Sat Oct 06, 2007 2:04 pm

Hi everyone,


Here is the LA Times Article on the Life of Minnie Ortner co-founder of Harvey's Broiler. Hope to see you all at the Holy Ghost Cruise.

http://www.latimes.com/news/obituaries/ ... ome-center

Retrocool
www.saveharveysbroiler.com
Member Downey Historical Society,

President - The Downey Conservancy

Aerospace Legacy Foundation Board Member

President - Downey Museum of Art


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