Pulling into the Mars Drive-in for a Lime Rickey. Ordering up a burger from the car hop at the A&W on Blackstone. Checking out the action at Bob's Big Boy. Your favorite grilled cheese sandwich at the Woolworths Counter. Don't forget loading up at Perry Boys Smorgy. What eats do you miss?


Post by Scott-o-Rama » Fri Feb 05, 2010 2:01 pm

His name was Les Lindley, I believe, and Al used to refer to him as his 'old fraternity brother' when they did those ads together. My dad sold paper cups, straws, and frosty cones to Les, and Pop would show up whenever Les opened a new location to tutor the new crew in the fine art of making a perfectly symetrical frosty. A coupla times I tagged along and Les treated us to free burgers, fries and shakes. Fun! Another time, Les hired my big brother to dress up like Batman for one of his grand openings. Wish I still had those photos!

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Post by flyingcubby » Wed Mar 03, 2010 6:48 pm

Who could forget the infamous Lesterburger with AL RADKA doing the ads on television
Fresno Bee - Lesterburger ad


Re: Lesterburger

Post by FresnoNut » Thu Mar 04, 2010 6:35 am

Hello, yes I remember the 'ol Lesterburger as well. I used to frequent the one next to Sparkies Electronics. In fact, my best friend's girlfriend worked at the counter there and she used to give us freebies. Also: I remember the Lettuce Eat It routine (one of Al's best). I looked forward to getting home from Centennial Elementary and watching Al and the 3 Stooges. Then suddenly it was commercial time and I think it went something like this:

AL: Hey gang, we have my favorite person in the studio, Les come over here.

LES: Hello Al, I brought you something from Lesterburgers and it's still warm (Al turns to the camera with a knowing smile).

AL: My goodness, what's that green stuff? (hoping against all hope that it will be different this time).

LES: We'll get to that in a minute Al, but first I want you to take a look at this fresh golden bun with lots of delicious sesame seeds!

AL: Yes that looks good Les, but what about this green thing here? (point to the lettuce for the first of many times).

LES: And Al, take a look at that all meat paddy in the center. Doesn't that look great?

AL: Yes it does Les, but right now I'm really interested in what you call this stuff here (points to the lettuce again).

LES: Well Al, before we get to that, observe these fresh sliced tomatoes that we just put on (Les lifts the bun).

AL: Those do look great Les, but help me out here - what do you call this (points to the lettuce and this time makes a silly grin).

LES: Did you notice that we also include some nice freshly sliced onions, you do like onions don't you Al?

AL: Please, please - I'm going crazy with hunger here, WHAT DO YOU CALL THE GREEN STUFF? (Al raises his voice)

LES: Al please, one last thing. I want to point out our secrete sauce that we are very proud of at Lesterburgers. I made it myself just before I came in to the studio!

AL: For the love of gawd Les! What do you call this lovely shredded green thing right here? (point to the lettuce a final time).

LES: Well Al ........

AL: YES, YES? (Al is now practically drooling all over the bun).

LES: Well, it's, it's ...........

AL: (now wide eyed and completely focused on the Lesterburger)

LES: That's the lettuce.

AL: Well then! (Al looks directly at the camera, with the kookest grin ever)

AL: LETTUCE EAT IT! (devours a huge bite and then freezes as if the it were shot on film but they are still shooting live).
cup.jpg (47.42 KiB) Viewed 29698 times

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Re: Lesterburger

Post by pmam1973 » Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:19 pm

Love the pic of the cup! Their ads touted "shredded lettuce" in the burger. We used to hang out the one on Ventura and Cedar during high school in the 70's.

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Re: Lesterburger

Post by Rodney » Sun Apr 17, 2011 2:50 pm

Ha! The Lesterburger @ Blackstone & Clinton had an indoor "fireplace," complete with fake logs and a gas jet. One day, when the fire wasn't going, one of my buds slipped a firecracker between the logs. The next day at lunch, we noticed the fire was going. When we left I commented to one of the girls working there, "Hey Cora, I hear you opened with a 'bang' today!" My God she got p.o.'d at us---practically chased us out! This would've been in 1966 or 1967.

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Re: Lesterburger

Post by JAKE_HOLMES » Wed May 11, 2011 2:51 pm

Lesterburgers at Belmont and Chestnut. One of my earliest Fresno memories, we lived about 4 or 5 blocks away on Grant and Jackson. We'd get to go there every now and then. Fast food was a treat back then, not a way of life and we were pretty poor. I remember those burgers as a real treat, far more delicious than a Big Mac will ever be.

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Re: Lesterburger

Post by SuzyA » Sun Jun 26, 2011 9:50 am

1971-72 Worked in Medical Office Complex right next to Lester Burger corner of Cedar & Clinton. Good ole Lester Burger!

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Re: Lesterburger

Post by mkw » Thu Feb 02, 2012 1:21 pm

Lettuce Eat It !!
Fresno Bee ad


Re: Lesterburger

Post by dsavidto46 » Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:21 pm

The original Lesterburger was at the corner of Cedar and Tulare across the street from Roosevelt High School. The building was demolished when they widened Cedar.What kind of progress is that? Although, I think Lesterburger was out of business by then.


Re: Lesterburger

Post by Keith » Tue Sep 23, 2014 1:29 pm

Anybody remember when new owners opened 3 of the old Lesterburger locations (Ventura/Cedar - Chestnut/Belmont & Blackstone/Clinton) as Burger House? (I think Mike Dages - previous city counselman) was a primary in the business. It lasted about 2 years. I managed at all 3. This would be the 1978/79 era. (Supertramp played the Selland while I was employed there - dad had to come down and find me in the crowd - I had taken the business keys with me to the show).

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