I remember decades ago I had a friend was was an exec at WB. I got a pass from him and was dropped off by him in the middle of River City, lowa and told I could go anywhere there wasn't red lights or signs. I got not only a free run of the stdio, but also Burbank Ranch. I wasn't allowed to take any pics which was a shame, but I'll always remember the odd sights - like the Waltons house across from the Fantasy Island house at the Ranch. Or the western town with all the doors missing (apparently they had taken them to a standing real set for Maverick, to make sure it matched backlot footage).
Sorry, that's the way I feel, after so much of it on the TPR 2014 Scandi Tour. So much fried food offered - and I went with salads instead. Go figger... *(Sorry I went that way, Divv. Great report btw....)
After our late finish at Disneyland we hit the road the next morning to make the drive to Las Vegas. One of the stops we had planned out for this road trip was in San Bernardino. Now you'll remember a few updates ago I posted an update from the the world's oldest operating McDonald's but that was the third restaurant. Yes, there was a couple of restaurants even older than that one which no longer exist.
One of those of course is the very first McDonald's restaurant that was opened as a BBQ joint by brothers Dick and Mack McDonald in 1940. In the 1950s they changed the place to a hamburger fast food restaurant and eventually sold the franchise rights to Ray Kroc and the rest is history. This restaurant is long since closed down and demolished but a new building that now exists on the site was purchased by the Juan Pollo chain a while back where a museum commemorating the history of McDonald's now sits in its place. This location is not officially recognised by the McDonald's Corporation however. There's a museum in Des Plaines. Illinois where the ninth store was built (Ray Kroc's first) which the company officially says is their first store. But now you know better! (I'd still love to visit the museum in Illinois though!)
When you enter the museum you are greeted by the curator who ushers you around and gives you a detailed history lesson on the company. You can tell the place is not official - it all looks a bit thrown together but what they have there is fascinating and it's great that this landmark still exists to such a historical site.
More McDonald's history! Here I am at the site of the very first McDonald's restaurant in San Bernardino, California!
You enter the museum and the first thing that grabs your eye is that utterly terrifying Grimace costume!
There's a whole wall showing photos of some of the early restaurants and staff.
Here's one of those milkshake mixers that Ray Kroc was selling when he encountered McDonald's and decided upon a career change.
There's just cabinets upon cabinets of old school Happy Meal toys.
Old busted fryers and bricks from the original restaurant - yup, they have those!
A look back to happier times when Disney was in bed with McDonald's.
More old school Happy Meal tat.
There were some really awesome employee hats over the years. I'd love to see our good Brit Crew friend, Brad in one of those Big Mac hats!
McDonald's razor blades?! It was a thing in 1980 apparently!
These are happy meal boxes from way before my time. I love that they joined to make a train!
The world's longest french fry (at one point at least, I've no idea if it still is). Looks delicious!
The curator collects McDonald's promotional boxes from all over the world and encourages visitors from other countries to send theirs in. (I can kind of relate to this!)
McDonald's Lego! YES!
Mac Tonight was apparently some campaign from the 80s or 90s in the US. I don't think we ever saw it in the UK. Cool sign!
It's worth taking a huge detour on any drive just to see one of the original straws from the McDonald brothers' 1940 Barbeque place!
Here's a picture of what the original restaurant looked like before it was demolished.
The outside of the building has a few items taken from McDonald's playgrounds over the years.
There's loads of random pictures from the history of the company and other random San Bernardino stuff painted over the walls.
And that's the Original McDonald's Museum! Like I said in the earlier update, I'm really fascinated by the history of McDonald's and since we were passing on the way to Vegas this made a pretty cool stop for us. Check it out if you're ever stopping by!
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