Sambo's Restaurant

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?

Sambo's Restaurant

Post by wisguyz5 » Wed Nov 28, 2012 4:40 pm

Does anyone remember Sambo's at the corner of McKinley and Blackstone Avenues? All I remember is the cartoon tiger that they used as a mascot... Use to stop by there as a kid in the late 70's on my way home to Clovis after visiting the grandparents in the Tower District...
fresno-sambos-token.jpg (178.2 KiB) Viewed 28855 times

Big J
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Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by Big J » Tue Dec 04, 2012 11:14 am

Yes! Sambo's later became Season's as part of a portion of their franchises changing their name to be PC. Great menu and a great atmosphere, kind of like a cross between Denny's and Bob's Big Boy. Wish either iteration of the restaurant were still around.

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Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by Sharlsie » Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:45 pm

I remember it well. It was right down the street from where my mom worked at the time. Ate there quite a few times. And I remember the tiger and cartoons too. I used to work at the Bob's Big Boy on on Abby and Belmont in 1975/1976. Fun times.

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Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by sjvalleydave » Fri Feb 01, 2013 1:01 pm

The original Sambo's in Santa Barbara is still open and under the same name. Went there a few years ago...I really enjoyed that place as a kid, with the Santa Fe railroad running so close to it..LOL

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Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by FresnoBeach » Fri Feb 22, 2013 1:03 pm

There were a few SAMBO's in Fresno. I really like the place and went many times as a kid. in 2010 i went to the one in Santa Barbara, but this time I was able to have a mimosa with my pancakes.


Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by lostlakefound » Fri Mar 08, 2013 2:54 pm

Fresno childhood memories tell me that I saw images of little black Sambo at that restaurant. But I must have been wrong because no where on the interwebz can I find a photo like that. Now the original book on the other hand...
little black sambo.JPG
little black sambo.JPG (27.02 KiB) Viewed 28851 times


Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by Guest » Wed Oct 07, 2015 3:22 pm

My dad opened the Sambo's at McKinley and Blackstone circa 1966. There were indeed several Sambo's in Fresno, one on Shaw across from Fashion Fair, and one in front of the Fulton Mall downtown (next to that parking lot with the twin spiral ramps). As you say, there were cartoonish pieces of art in the restaurants depicting the Bannerman Sambo's story, both paintings on the walls, and back-lit panels above the cook's stations. The picture below, while not the Blackstone location, is the same general layout.



Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by Fresburger » Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:05 pm

Remember the Fulton one downtown very well. We lived in Fresno until 73 then moved to Atwater. Once a month Mom, Dad and I would take a trip to Fresno to go to the library, shop at Gotchalks (sorry for spelling), stroll on the mall, eat at Sambo's and then back home. Always collected the wooden nickels good for a cup of coffee. Lots of great memories no one can take away. I am sorry Sambo's that the PC crap that was just starting back then helped ruin you.


Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by Elizabird » Sun Jan 03, 2021 8:42 am

I remember the Sambo's on Blackstone and Shaw. In 1983-4' my AA home group used to go up there after our evening meetings and have (usually) breakfasts and tons of coffee. We kind of continued our meetings up there, lots of drunkalogue stories and, for those whose physical states had improved thru sobriety, tons of weird and funny stories...and a lot of love. The waitresses had a lot of patience with us too...we would shove tables together and carry chairs around for latecomers, etc. Sambo's became our club, and I have fond memories indeed.

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Re: Sambo's Restaurant

Post by sfbytes » Mon Dec 06, 2021 12:00 am

I remember that Sambo's well, I also worked at the one downtown next to the Police Station as I recall. 1968 as I recall. My fondest memory of the one on Blackstone and McKinley was being in a booth with my father and older brother, in walks this hippie chick with a very mini skirt and every man's head became fixated on it. I can still see her strolling in, slowly walking down the aisle and then slowly taking a booth.

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