Archive for the ‘Historic Business’ Category

Now I’m not in the market for jewelry – but if I was in Austin TX I’d head to Kruger’s Jewelers to buy my baubles, just to say thank you to them for keeping their vintage signage and facade so glorious!

Kruger's Jewelers Clock and Facade

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It was a happy coincidence that the Mayflower cafe – oldest restaurant in the capital of Missisippi (Since 1935) was just 2 blocks from our hotel, so we hoofed it over there on a bright sunny morning and had an early lunch of some tasty seafood in this vintage restaurant.
Mayflower Cafe Sign and Exterior


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Here are some quick tips for vintage and retro roadmap worthy places in Atlanta GA – we wish we could’ve spent more time with ’em – but check them out for us next time you’re in the area!

The Majestic Diner
The interior of the Majestic has been recently re-done and the food was standard, but no one can deny the allure of their wonderful vintage neon signage and chasing lightbulbs.
Majestic "Diner" Neon Signs - Atlanta GA
The Majestic “diner” has been serving “Food That Pleases” since 1929, and is open 24 hours a day, every day, ‘cept for closing on Christmas eve. They reopen the day after Xmas at 6am.

Majestic Diner
1031 Ponce De Leon Avenue Northeast
Atlanta, GA 30306
(404) 875-0276

Starlight Six Drive-In Movie Theatre
The Starlight Six is Atlanta’s only remaining drive in movie theatre and I’m grateful to the folks at Drive-Ins.com for providing the background on The Starlight.

Starlight Six Drive In Theatre Sign Atlanta GAIf it weren’t for them we would not know that the Starlight opened in 1949 as a single screen DI and stayed that way ’til the 80’s when it went  to a 4, then a 6 screen outdoor cinema. As you can read on the marquee they have flea markets during the weekend days.

Starlight Six Drive In Movie Theatre
2000 Moreland Avenue Southeast
Atlanta, GA 30316-3250
(404) 635-1087

The Fabulous Fox Theatre
The Fox Theatre is in the heart of Atlanta and on the Register of Historic Places.

Fox Theatre Marquee Atlanta GABuilt in the pre-crash 1920’s the 4000+ seat Fox has managed to survive in part because of the citizens of Atlanta who rallied to save it from demolition in the 1970’s.
The Fox Theatre and My Keds Atlanta GA
I encourage you to read the interesting history of this classic venue here on their website or on the Fox Theatre’s Wikipedia page. Even if you don’t read a word of it, do yourself a favor and check out the Fox’s schedule if you’re ever in the area and see a show at this grand old theatre.

The Fox Theatre
660 Peachtree Street Northeast
Atlanta, GA 30308
(404) 881-2100

Just because we didn’t get to spend enough time in Vintage Atlanta doesn’t mean you can’t – now that we’ve given you a head start you can plan your fun around these great old time places! And of course we’ve added them to the RetroRoadmap to make it easy peasy to find ’em next time you’re in ‘lanta.

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I’ve loved this well kept neon sign of Weitzenkorn’s Men’s Store for years and am glad that RetroRoadmap gave me the excuse to pull over and snap a photo of it to share. How else would I have found out that the country’s second oldest Men’s store is located in Pottstown PA? Still family owned, the business began in 1864!

Weitzenkorn's Men's Store Neon Sign Pottstown PA

According to the Historic Pottstown Walking Tour plaque outside of the store, this location has been open since 1877 and the first electric lamp in Pottstown was installed in this store in 1889. The Weitzenkorn’s certainly know something about keeping the lamp light burning bright.

Historic Pottstown Walking TourWhile RetroRoadhusband isn’t typically in the market for suits, next time he needs something formal to wear we’ll head over to visit this historic shop to have a looksee. I know it’s a place that my dad would have approved of  (Brooks Brothers is the oldest men’s clothing store in the country, dad certainly approved of them). If nothing else, I’d love to see the display case of memorabilia dating back to the 1890’s.

My RetroRoadmap hat goes off to Marc and Gregg Weitzenkorn, for keeping this family business going strong, and their fabulous vintage sign in excellent shape!

145 East High Street
Pottstown, PA 19464-5448
(610) 323-8810

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As I sit here in Retro Roadmap headquarters hovering over my cup of tea for warmth, I’m remembering the hot beverages and cozy atmosphere of Caffe Reggio in New York City. We visited Greenwich Village’s oldest coffee house a few weeks ago thanks to the recommendation of our NYC go-to-guy for all that’s cool in the city, RetromanNYC , and I’m glad we did!

Caffe Reggio Neon Sign

Caffe Reggio is famous for introducing cappuccino to the United States, and proudly displays their original cappuccino machine in their dimly lit yet wonderfully inviting interior. Retro Roadhusband was more than happy to partake in one of their famous cappuccinos (gave it the thumbs up) and I ordered a hot tea for me. I was delighted when my tea arrived, not in a bag, but in a pot, with strainer and all, to catch the loose tea leaves.

Caffe Reggio Tea Service

When RetromanNYC suggested Caffe Reggio to us he let us know that it was his mother’s favorite hang between classes (or sometimes instead of classes!) when she attended NYU. I can see the allure of the place for folks from any era, with the eclectic artwork, surprisingly friendly service and a history of notable customers, beatniks and all. While the cafe is currently non-smoking, I can just imagine a college age gal drinking cappuccino, smoking Gitanes and feeling very continental.

Caffe Reggio Coffee Alcove Waiting at our marble bistro table for our beverages to arrive it was fun to absorb all of the details of the small space, and watch the steady stream of customers coming in from the cold. I was enchanted by the antique lighting and stained glass, tin roof and antiques, all giving off the vibe that they had been there forever. You can’t buy patina like this.

Caffe Reggio Tin Ceiling

If you don’t mind being seen, there are seats at the window, and for warmer weather there is cafe seating outside.

Caffe Reggio Cafe Society
Caffe Reggio also serves soups, sandwiches, pastries, desserts and more- had we not had plans for dinner that evening we would’ve grabbed a bite for sure. Just writing about it makes me want to go back there right now, and join in the cafe society!

Caffe Reggio
119 MacDougal Street
New York, NY 10012-1202
(212) 475-9557

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It’s getting to be that time of year again when folks are looking for holiday cheer, and what could be more cheery than a bunch of people bursting into song at the Macy’s  store in Philadelphia, singing along to Hallelujah played on that fabulous Wanamaker Organ?

Click here to read my post from our visit to hear the Wanamaker Organ play Christmas tunes last year.

Here’s the Random Act of Culture, where th Opera Company of Philadelphia’s performance of Hallelujah.

Wanamaker Grand Organ Christmas Light Spectacular
1300 Market St
Philadelphia, PA 19107
(215) 241-9000

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Prepping for my NorthEast Pennsylvania visit to scout places for the Retro Roadmap / Roadside Fans Meetup in Scranton on Sunday 11/14, my trusty NEPA guide Aubrey recommended the Dunmore Candy Kitchen in Dunmore PA. She recounted fond memories from her youth of their home made chocolates, penny candy, ice cream and the regional sundae treat known as a CMP. Who could resist?

Dunmore Candy Kitchen Sign

Open since 1904, current owner Laura Reuther is only the 3rd owner to run this historic establishment in the quiet town of Dunmore, having purchased it just last year from the previous owner who had run the small shop since the 1960’s.

Dunmore Candy Kitchen Dunmore Bargain Store

Known for their home made chocolates and special recipies, Laura spent months training with the previous owner to ensure that she had the correct flavors and processes down pat, and has started adding her own specialties to the menu. I was given a sample of chocolate covered potato chips, and can I just say, yum? Salty sweet and crunchy, right up my snack alley.

Though she’s the new owner she’s got many of the old molds to make the classic chocolates area residents clamor for.

Dunmore Candy Kitchen Chocolate Nittany Lions
(Since I moved to PA I’ve learned that that this ominous looking creature is actually the Nittany Lion, mascot of Penn State!)

The candy counter lines one wall while the ice cream counter runs up the other. I sat on one of the new retro counter stools and ordered Aubrey’s favorite  – a CMP which stands for Chocolate Marshmallow and Peanuts. While it was tasty, I take points off for it being served in a paper cup. With all that vintage goodness around, a couple of glass parfait glasses would add an authentic touch!Dunmore Candy Kitchen Ice Cream Counter

I am always pleased to see a vintage mixer in any ice cream establishment, for some reason I just love that color green.

Dunmore Candy Kitchen Multimixer

I was also taken by the well kept original floor- looks like a mix of mosaic and terrazzo to me. Anyone out there a vintage tile floor expert? Whatever style it is a great combination of vintage colors.

Dunmore Candy Kitchen Mosaic Floor

Hanging towards the back of the store is a vintage advertising calendar from 1940, when the Dunmore Candy Kitchen was celebrating its 36th Anniversary.
Dunmore Candy Kitchen Vintage 1940 Calendar

Sitting at the ice cream counter eating my CMP I was pleased to notice a small but steady stream of customers coming in. Older folks looking for their favorite chocolate covered dates to young boys buying penny candy. The ladies I chatted with behind the candy counter were friendly and more than happy to tell me about the store and candies. Now I can see why this unassuming little place in a quiet little Northeast town has been around for over 100 years. Thanks Aubrey, for the local skinny on this place!

Dunmore Candy Kitchen
206 E Drinker St
Dunmore, PA 18512-2434
(570) 343-0536

You can Like the Dunmore Candy Kitchen on their Facebook page too!

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